PUPILS are to knock on the Prime Minister’s front door to demand he do more to help countries where children are forced to walk miles to get clean drinking water.
Youngsters at Craneswater Juniors in Southsea were so shocked to learn of the problems in places like Mali that 90 of them decided to write letters to David Cameron.
Twelve pupils have now been chosen to deliver the letters to Number 10 next Wednesday – and will be dressed in their own designed T-shirts promoting their message.
It comes after pupils carried out a sponsored 3.7-mile ‘water walk’ where they carried buckets filled with water around their school – to replicate what children in deprived parts of the world go through every day of their lives.
Ruby Parent, 10, said: ‘The bucket is quite heavy but we’re doing this because we want to know what other children have to do to get water that we take for granted.
‘We can just turn a tap on, but they have to walk for miles to get dirty water. We watched lots of videos and saw they were really poor and living in desert-like areas and decided we had to do something. We hope we will be able to raise lots of money for Oxfam to help these children, but more importantly we want to make sure Mr Cameron increases overseas aid. We are passionate about this.’
Tyler Hollett, 10, said before learning about water in school he thought all children had access to drinking water.
He said ‘I was shocked when I found out how badly off they are, and I felt really sorry for them.
‘About 75 per cent of our world is water but it’s all seawater which is no good for them. We need to give those communities money so they can build boreholes and pumps to get clean water.’
Ten-year-old Marly Rothwell will visit Downing Street next week with the letters – with extracts of some of them printed below.
She said: ‘Yes this country may be in a financial crisis but we all have access to the basics like clean water which means we have a duty to help others who are worse off.
‘Children die every minute because they don’t have water.’
The PM has committed 0.7 per cent of national income to go on international development, but people including the Archbishop of York Dr John Sentamu say spending on overseas is still ‘woefully short of what is needed’.
Dave Jones, headteacher, said: ‘I’m very proud of our children. It was their idea to write to Mr Cameron and their arguments are persuasive, because they feel so strongly about it.’