PUPILS from a Darlington school have been raising funds to help alleviate suffering of the earthquake victims in Pakistan.

Youngsters from Polam Hall School, in Grange Road, collected £1,626 after organising a bag pack at the town's Sainsbury's supermarket.

The idea to organise the fundraiser came from Ayesha Malik, deputy headgirl at the school, who has friends and relatives living in the area devastated by the earthquake.

Ayesha helped to co-ordinate more than 50 students, who gave up their day off to help Sainsbury's shoppers with their grocery packing.

Girls from all senior year groups joined in, together with Ayesha's relatives and Polam Hall old scholars.

The event had a real multi-cultural feel with girls from England, Russia, Hong Kong and the Middle East showing their compassion for those whose lives have been shattered by the disaster.

The money will be donated to the Disasters Emergency Committee to buy tents to help the homelessness and combat the onset of the winter weather.

Headteacher Marie Green said: "We were all touched by the terrible scenes from Pakistan and deeply concerned for Ayesha's friends and relatives, who thankfully came through the trauma unscathed. This was a wonderful initiative from our students and I am thrilled with the amount of money they raised.

"Everyone worked extremely hard at Sainsbury's and I know the shoppers were impressed by their dedication and enterprise."