Trail of coins to help poor of Africa

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CARING fundraisers in Hucknall have hit the ‘gold’ standard with an Olympics-themed initiative to support the troubled people of rural Malawi, one of the poorest countries in the world.

For the past few months, during both the Olympic and Paralympic Games, Central Methodist Church on Baker Street has been filling up Olympic torches with coins to raise money for a special project called ‘Water Aid Big Dig Appeal’ to supply clean water to the most deprived.

The church’s worship leader, Catherine Smith, was the inspiration behind the fundraising event and she says the objective was “to try and change the lives of 134,000 people in Malawi who are desperate for help”.

At a special coffee morning, the torches, filled with coins, were brought into church where they were emptied before being painstakingly laid out along the length of the world triple-jump record of more than 60 feet (more than 18 metres) to exceed the record.

This was duly achieved when Juliet Smith and Scarlett Mason laid the final coins in place, one of which was appropriately an Olympics 50p piece.

It was later announced that a magnificent sum of £460 was raised for the Water Aid Big Deal Appeal. What’s more, the total will be matched, pound-for-pound, by the UK government.

A delighted Catherine said she was immensely proud of the outcome.

“Safe, clean water is something we all take for granted in this country,” she added. “Yet, according to Water Aid, one in ten of the world’s population do not have access to safe water.

“Our church’s efforst in support of tackling this is really praiseworthy.

“Everyone has dug deep to help such a good cause and I would like to pay tribute to them all.”

n OUR PHOTO shows Juliet (left) and Scarlett laying out the last of the coins (PHOTO AND STORY BY: Peter Jordan).