SPORTY pupils from a Stourport school have returned home after spending 10 days in Jamaica coaching underprivileged young people.
The six year 11 students from Stourport High School and Sixth Form Centre, Sophie Jancey, Logan Gray, Holly Elliott, Alex Cook, Sam Foely and Jack Rowley, set off on their travels on July 20.
They spent four days coaching more than 50 young people tag rugby in the mornings and tri-golf in the afternoons on a muddy field in the middle of the village of Mandeville.
Alexandra Mays is the partnership development manager at Wyre Forest School Sports Partnership, organisers of the trip.
She said: “Initially, we thought the participants would be between the ages of 10 and 14 but we had people as young as four and as old as 22 turn up.
“Some had even walked for over an hour to attend the sessions, which was definitively an eye-opener for our students.”
The Rugby Football Union and the tri-golf Association provided the group with all the sports equipment they would need for free.
The equipment was then left behind for the use of the local community.
Mrs Mays said: “It was great to be able to leave the equipment with the children, as it would be of a huge benefit to the whole community for years to come.”
As well as the four days coaching, the group also spent two days volunteering at and helping to paint and decorate an elementary school.
It was not all work and no play for the students as they were able to spend a few days sightseeing around the area, which included a trip to the beach.
The sports partnership also organised for the group to take part in cultural activities in the evening.
On one night the pupils spent their time learning patois.
Mrs Mays said: “The teachers who went with the pupils were full of compliments for the way the students behaved and the efforts they put in while on the trip.
“They all seemed to really enjoy themselves.”
The students were required to raise £20,000 to go on the trip which they did by holding various bag packs, quiz nights, race nights and a Valentine’s ball.
“The ball was a fantastic evening,” Mrs Mays added.
“We held a charity auction on the night from donations off local businesses, which help raise quite a bit of money.”
Vicky Shipton, Sophie Jancey’s mother, said: “They all worked so hard raising the money to go and did extremely well with running the bag packs and the Valentine’s ball that they deserved to have a great time away.”