THEY may be separated by more than 4,000 miles of Atlantic Ocean, but Saint Martin’s School and the Caribbean island of St Maarten share a special bond.
When Hurricane Irma struck in September it left a trail of devastation across the Caribbean, with the small island of St Maarten crippled in its wake.
Images were beamed across the globe of the carnage.
And it was these images that sparked the girls into action and raised £1,400 for schoolchildren on the island their school shares a name with.
Key Stage three pupils at the Brueton Avenue school quickly set about writing letters of support to their counterparts at the Caribbean International Academy.
They also held a variety of fundraising events including selling mocktails during break, hosting a Caribbean Dance and holding a Caribbean-themed dress-down day.
And the staff did more than their bit too – a number of them taking part in the Birmingham Half Marathon to raise vital cash for the island and its schoolchildren.
Nicola Smillie, Headteacher, said: “Everybody at the school was so shocked when we saw the devastation of Hurricane Irma that we had to do something to help – especially with the island of Saint Maarten being so badly affected.
“The money we raised and the letters of support written by the girls were so warmly received and we hope to build on the new friendship we have created.”
So appreciative were the pupils at the Caribbean International Academy that, now things are beginning to return to normal, they have sent letters of thanks back to the girls at Saint Martin’s in Solihull explaining how much they had meant to them.
Mrs Smillie added: “It was so nice to receive the letters from the schoolchildren in St Maartens and to hear how much our support to them had meant and how it had helped them through such a terrible time.
“Helping those in need – both at home and further afield – is so important to us here at Saint Martin’s and is a key part of our girls’ education.”