Mary’s Meals is sending a further 6,000 backpacks – filled with basic educational resources like pens and books – to hungry children in Malawi, bringing the total number of backpacks sent overseas by the charity to a staggering 250,000.
School children from St Monica’s Primary School in Glasgow helped volunteers and warehouse staff celebrate by lending a hand loading up a container with the latest donation of backpacks.
Mary’s Meals aims to remove the barriers that stop the world’s poorest children from benefiting from an education and, while the charity’s main work is its school feeding programmes, it decided to develop the Backpack Project after finding that a lack of very basic educational resources was another obstacle to children in Malawi making the most of school.
Tony Begley, Education Co-ordinator at Mary’s Meals, said: “We’re delighted that our Backpack Project has reached the quarter-million milestone.
“These backpacks, filled with everyday school supplies, will provide a real lifeline to Malawian children, as studies show that receiving an education is the best way for a chronically poor child to escape poverty in later life.”
In addition to the hundreds of individuals, schools, churches and other groups who have supported the Backpack project over the years, several high profile figures have also got involved. Prime Minister David Cameron has contributed Downing Street branded pens in the past, and EastEnders star June Brown donated some drawing sets.