Children at a St Albans primary school have been praised for their fundraising efforts after a Ugandan village received a life-changing borehole.

Pupils at Garden Fields School have raised £2,400 towards a new borehole through embracing a ‘Penny in a bottle’ challenge, saving as many pennies, two pence and five pence pieces in a water bottle as they could in a month.

The school’s council devised posters and publicity around the school and the fundraising scheme was run as an inter-house challenge. After emptying out the contents of their bottles it then took two people four days solidly to count up the grand total.

Chris Jukes, head teacher at the Townsend Drive school said: "The children really latched on to the ideas of fundraising by collecting pennies in a water bottle.

"It was a really super effort and shows the caring side of children at Garden Fields."

The project is one of many schemes designed by Harpenden charity, Spotlight on Africa (HSoA) to raise awareness of the lives of people in Uganda within schools in the Harpenden and St Albans area.

Hilary Hollick, HSoA’s schools liaison officer, said: "Thanks to the children’s fundraising efforts there is now a borehole in a place which did not have clean water before.

"I showed a video of the villagers from Mukaga thanking the children for their new borehole. The children positively glowed with pride to think that their money has made such a difference to these people’s lives

Created in 2007, HSoA was founded out of a commitment by a group of Harpenden residents to transform the lives of some of the poorest people in sub-Saharan Africa.

The schools are currently focusing on projects about clean water, with the charity explaining the impact of dirty water on people’s health.

Ms Hollick added: "Before the villagers would have walked for miles to get water, which even then may not have been clean.  Now they can just pump the water out of the borehole in their village, meaning children can go to school and they are less likely to get sick."