A SIXTH form smashed its £750 fundraising target by making more than £1,800 for regional charity Children North East.

Staff at Durham Sixth Form Centre decided instead of buying each other Christmas gifts they would make a donation to the charity’s Hope for Christmas appeal.

The idea came after the college worked on the charity’s Voices project to help schools, local authorities and services understand the challenges children and young people experience due to the coronavirus pandemic and inform their planning and adaptations post Covid-19.

Students, ex-students, governors and families also made donations and added the proceeds of a Christmas jumper day to the pot.

Headteacher at Durham Sixth Form Centre, Ellen Beveridge, said: “We all recognise what a difficult year it was for everyone and in so many different ways.

“It has been even more important to not only look after ourselves but to also look after and look out for each other. It has been a pleasure to work with Children North East and a privilege to support families in our region.

"We wish everyone our best wishes for 2021.”

Catriona Taylor, head of fundraising and communications at Children North East, said: “The team at Durham Sixth Form Centre raised an incredible amount for our Hope for Christmas campaign, helping support children throughout Christmas and in the months to come.

“Our fundraising events and activities have been hugely hindered due to the impact of Covid-19, so support like Durham Sixth Form Centre’s festive fundraising has been truly heart-warming.

"This is allowing us to support to babies, children, young people and their families in the region where and when it is needed most.”