Special raincoats for Paerata students

Special raincoats for Paerata students

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Paerata School students have been surprised with a special visit by members of the Warriors rugby league team.

Warriors players Bodene Thompson, Jonathan Wright, Ata Hingago and Kiwi Ferns women’s league player Georgia Hale handed out raincoats to all the students as part of KidsCan’s raincoats for kids programme.

Former Kiwis and Warriors league player Jerome Ropati was also on hand to help give out the raincoats at Paerata School, alongside KidsCan representatives and sponsors.

Paerata School principal Luke Thompson said all of the students would remember the day for a long time to come.

‘‘It’s something that we had to keep a surprise for them and it’s just a heart-warming feeling when their eyes do light up when they recognise these superstars from the field.’’

KidsCan had just taken Paerata School off their waitlist in July of this year, which means they’ll now be providing Paerata students with food, raincoats, shoes and basic healthcare and hygiene support.

‘‘It’s a fantastic opportunity for the school to have that relationship with KidsCan,’’ Thompson said.

‘‘We’re really grateful for the opportunity to be apart of the KidsCan family and we’re just thankful they’re able to take us on.’’

KidsCan chief executive and co-founder Julie Chapman said providing raincoats could be a financial struggle for lower income families with many children kept home when it rains.

‘‘Those who do go to school turn up wet and freezing cold, which makes it very difficult to focus and participate in class.’’

The raincoats for kids programme reduced absenteeism and helped to build self-esteem and a culture of belonging at school, she said.

 

Since its inception in 2005, KidsCan has provided over 237,000 raincoats to help keep kids warm and dry.

In total, KidsCan supports 568 low decile schools around the country.

KidsCan also runs a Shoes for Kids programme distributing more than 105,000 pairs of shoes and 210,000 pairs of socks, to keep feet protected, warm and dry.

The Food for Kids programme supports more than 20,000 hungry children a week, and Health for Kids provides basic health and hygiene products and targets head lice and skin infections.