Pupils aim to make a profit for charities

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Groups of students from two Morpeth schools are putting their heads together to come up with creative business ideas for a regional competition.

Newcastle Building Society’s third annual Boardroom Charity Challenge tasks the nine and ten-year-old participants to develop enterprising initiatives that focus on benefiting their local community while also making a profit.

There are teams from 14 North East schools in total, including Morpeth First School in Goosehill and Chantry Middle School and Technology College.

A short-list of entries compiled by an initial judging panel will go forward to the competition’s final stages. Pupils will give presentations to a panel of business figures in the Society’s boardroom.

The team from Darlington’s Heathfield Primary School won last year’s challenge and they used the £500 first prize to set up their family fun day idea, which raised more than £3,000 for the Butterwick Hospice.

The prize for the overall challenge winner this year has been doubled to a £1,000 donation towards putting their ideas into practice, with all the other participants receiving runner-up awards.

Natalie Falkous, head of corporate social responsibility at Newcastle Building Society, who will be part of the judging panel, said: “We’re thrilled to have so many schools on board once again this year and are looking forward to hearing the Morpeth schools’ ideas for supporting their chosen good causes.

“The information we’re able to share through this scheme is designed to help young people prepare for looking after their own finances, which is a topic that we believe you can’t start learning about early enough.”