IN Great Sankey High School we have an overseas partnership with South Peninsula High in South Africa, writes Jennifer Castle.

The link has been slowly developing over the years but I only found out more when I joined Team South Africa which dedicates itself to preparing for South African visitors aged 15 and 16 from the link school by raising more than £3,000.

We sold refreshments at school events and spent two Sundays bag-packing in Morrisons but we got there in the end.

On a sunny day in April we welcomed Ryan, Nabeela and Jodie who had made a 14-hour trip all the way from Cape Town.

They came bundled in scarves and gloves even though most of us had taken off our school blazers in the heat.

We went on several trips throughout the two weeks and several of us in the team made friends that we knew we would keep for life.

The effects on us as a team were phenomenal; we all learnt how to work efficiently in a team and towards a deadline and felt the real effort and commitment that is needed to succeed in charity work.

We were rewarded for our efforts with two weeks of great fun and developed relationships with the teachers and parents that committed themselves to making sure we had a fantastic experience.