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Leeds Trinity students helping deprived children in South Africa

Posted on 08 June 2018


​Seven students from Leeds Trinity University will travel to South Africa this week to work with a school in one of the most deprived communities in the country.

The students, who are studying Primary Education, Sport Science or Sport Psychology, will join a group of staff and students from St. Mary's Menston Catholic Voluntary Academy and the University of Leeds, as part of the Bambisanani Partnership, a collaboration between St. Mary's Menston and Mnyakanya High School in South Africa.

Thanks to the partnership, which uses sport as a catalyst to promote education, health, global citizenship and leadership, students from Leeds Trinity will have the opportunity to visit Mnyakanya High School in South Africa, where they will work with students in the classroom and on various sporting activities from 9 to 24 June. Bambisanani is the Zulu word for 'working hand in hand', which reflects the partnership of the schools.

Oorjitha Prem, 20, a second year Sport and Exercise Science student, said: "My major passions in life are sport and fitness, and travelling, so an opportunity with both together is one I had to grab! What I'm looking forward to most is expanding the children's minds and their thinking about how to develop and hone their leadership and teamwork skills through sport, as well as helping those in need, making their lives easier and putting a smile on their faces, because no matter what your circumstances, everybody deserves to be happy."

Chris Rowley, Sport Psychology lecturer at Leeds Trinity University, said: "I am delighted that Leeds Trinity is part of the Bambisanani Partnership. It's a fantastic partnership that shows the impact that sport can have on communities and individuals. For our students, it is an amazing volunteering opportunity where they can make a real difference to the lives of children and young people in South Africa."

The students have raised money to cover the cost of the trip and will gain academic credit for completing the programme, which forms part of their professional work placement.

Leeds Trinity was officially welcomed into the Bambisanani Partnership in March, and this is the first year Leeds Trinity students are taking part in the programme, which was launched in 2006 to develop an equitable, sustainable and effective partnership for the mutual benefit of both communities and beyond.

The students taking part are: Oorjitha Prem, Danielle Lawrance, Katherine Skelton, Hannah Page, Harriett Mackinney, Beth Ward, and Amy James. They will join lecturers Chris Rowley and Nicola Arjomandkhah.

Find out more information on the Bambisanani Partnership website and follow updates on the trip on Twitter.