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Children of war touch Kiwi kids' hearts

Children of war touch Kiwi kids' hearts

In what looks to be a record year for World Vision's 40 Hour Famine, the theme of 'peace not pieces' has touched a chord with Kiwi kids.

School pupils and young people around the country have raised many thousands of dollars already for child victims of war by either going hungry over the 40 Hour Famine weekend of 19 ? 21 March, or by doing some sponsored activity to raise money.

"Students at Wellington College held a 40 Hour run for landmine victims, and have raised over $40,000 so far, and are aiming for $60,000," says World Vision's Youth Marketing Manager, Lisa Trail. "St Kentigern College has raised over $65,000 which is a $10,000 increase on their record year last year. This is a fantastic effort for landmine victims in Cambodia. It's great to see boys' schools achieving such excellent results."

Ms Trail reports a record two weeks of Famine income since the 40 Hour Famine Weekend. "Our income is now $750,000 and it's exciting to think of how this money is going to help thousands of child victims of war in Cambodia, Rwanda and Uganda, as well as street children in India and Bangladesh and other developing countries."

Last year the Famine raised $2.74 million, which was a record amount for World Vision New Zealand.

May 7 is an important date for schools ? they must have their money in by then to qualify for a scholarship award. World Vision assesses schools on many different criteria, including size of school, decile rating, and percentage increase on previous year. 20 senior and 20 intermediate schools are selected to attend Sanitarium and Just Juice scholarship weeks in Wellington and Auckland. From the 20 secondary school scholarship students, three will be selected as Sanitarium Travelling Scholars, to visit World Vision's Famine-funded projects in Cambodia in the September holidays.

"So it's really important for students to get their money and books back to school, and for schools to do their banking by May 7 to be eligible for selection," says Lisa Trail.

In the meantime, some teachers and principals are feeling the pain of success, as they honour promises to shave heads and fulfil other pledges as their pupils gather in the money.

Faminers can check out the national amount on the barometer on the 40 Hour Famine website: http://www.famine.org.nz

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