School push fundraising mission for talking books

A SCHOOL has been on a fundraising mission, after being inspired by one of their pupils who fronted a video in a national campaign to support talking books for the blind.

Five-year-old Louie Titre is registered as blind, and recently appeared in a video to promote talking books for the Royal National Institute of Blindness (RNIB).

After one of his teachers at Peartree Infant School watched it, she was so moved that she vowed to raise money for the cause, with the school giving their full backing and helping to organise a series of fundraisers.

In less than one month, they have joined with Louie’s mum Karen Thomas, to raise more than �3,000 by running a series of events and holding collections at schools and other local places.

“I wanted to do something to help, so I suggested that the children might like to start fundraising,” said Carol Hopkins, deputy head at the school.

“The reaction has been amazing. The children have worked hard and we’re really proud of them.”

Staff held a Santa fun run, where they all donned hats, and braved the cold weather to make their way around Fairlands Valley Park.

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The pupils have also got involved, with discos, collections after school plays and grocery packing at Sainsbury’s Poplars, a feat which raised more than �700.

Karen has held a stall at the school fete complete with a raffle and other games, and was at Sainsbury’s for the bag packing.

She also received a large donation from a company who wished to remain anonymous, and has seen the support of many businesses in Comet country.

“The school have been absolutely fantastic, and it all stemmed from Louie’s video,” said Karen.

“It costs �500 for a talking book, so we should be able to get five from the money we have raised. Louie has been really excited.

“I am definitely going to be continuing with the fundraising.”

Just five per cent of books are accessible to those with visual impairments, with many people not knowing about the talking book service.

“We are thrilled that the children have been inspired to learn about and raise money for the talking book service,” said Pat Beech, manager of the RNIB national library service.

“As Louie’s story proves, they really do make a huge different to people’s lives.”

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