Thousands of primary school children across ten Leeds schools are set to take part in a Christmas inspired fundraising event to raise funds for local homelessness charity, Simon on the Streets.
From 6th December almost 3,000 pupils will take part in an ‘Elf Run’ around their schools and local areas dressed as Christmas elves in support of the charity.
Simon on the Streets helps rough sleepers across Leeds, Bradford, and Kirklees through outreach work offering practical and emotional support.
Representatives from the charity are also visiting each school to teach the young students about the realities of homelessness and how they can help.
Five Lanes primary school in Wortley, Leeds will see all 456 pupils take part in the charity Elf Run. Organised by teaching assistant and leader of the school council, Julie Falkinder, she said:
“Children see homelessness all over. We want our pupils to be aware of it and know what’s happening around them especially in their local area. We would like them to appreciate just how lucky they are to go home to a nice warm bed every night. If our children and their families see homeless people outside a shop or café we would like to hope that they will show kindness and be more thoughtful to those less fortunate than themselves.”
The pupils and staff of Five Lanes, including nursery children as young as three years old, will be walking, skipping, hopping and running the approximate distance of Leeds to the North Pole (2501 miles) in their festive elf wear to raise money for the local cause.
Julie explained that the children of Five Lanes are always eager to support charities and love getting involved with fundraising challenges.
“Our children are so lovely and caring and we know that they will go home and talk to their parents about the event which starts the conversation and ultimately makes everyone more aware of the realities of homelessness and what we can do to help.”
Natalie Moran, CEO of Simon on the Streets commented:
“To see so many school children learn about the realities of homelessness and actively get involved in a fun initiative which will help raise valuable funds to support the local homeless community is truly heart-warming. We’re so grateful to Five Lanes and the other schools for their support and can’t wait to see them running, dressed in their festive outfits!”