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Woodfield Primary School Hosts Fabulous “Rio Carnival”

Newsdate: 13 July 2016Race to Rio

Woodfield Primary School hosted a fabulous event on Friday 1 July, as part of a project being run in conjunction with WWL’s Social Responsibility Group.

The “Race to Rio” project has seen pupils from the school, from all age groups, enthusiastically taking part in an initiative that aims to keep them active, by challenging them to exercise. During the project, pupils have been challenged to collectively walk over 47,000km, covering the distance between Wigan and Rio de Janeiro via 10 selected nations.

The project is inspired by the 2016 Olympic Games which take place in Rio de Janeiro this summer. On top of the physical exercise, pupils have also gained knowledge about the cultures of different countries competing at the games, as well as different Olympic sports.

Not just the work of WWL and Woodfield School, the project has enjoyed collaborative working between the school, our Trust and other partner organisations in the Wigan Borough. These have included; Metrofresh, Inspiring Healthy Lifestyles, Wigan Athletic, Public Health and Wigan Warriors.

To celebrate the work that the pupils have done, and to provide them with a fun-filled, yet informative, afternoon, the school hosted a “Rio Carnival”. This was held in the school sport’s hall, due to inclement weather, on Friday 1 July and the festivities began at 1pm.

At the event, a number of informative stalls were established by WWL staff. Among the issues covered were; Diabetes, Children’s Services, a Resuscitation Doll and NHS Careers. Wigan Athletic have been a dedicated partner during the project and their two mascots, Phoenix and Blue, were also on hand to promote the Wigan AthletiRace to Rioc Community Trust.

The event culminated with the pupils performing a special Brazilian dance they had been working on for weeks. Unfortunately, the weather was against them, but the children refused to let the torrential downpour dampen their spirits as they gave their performance on the school playground. Their dancing certainly helped to brighten up the day, as did the whole carnival. A wonderful time was had by all and it was a fitting tribute to what has been a hugely successful project.

Member of the WWL Social Responsibility Group, Kate Roden, said, “Working with Woodfield Primary School on this project has been an absolute privilege. The enthusiasm with which the pupils have approached this initiative has been wonderful. The project has really fulfilled its objective in encouraging children to prioritise their health and understand the importance of staying active.  We now can’t wait to roll this initiative out to more schools across the Borough.”

WWL Deputy Chief Executive and Chair of the Social Responsibility Group, Rob Forster, said, “As one of the largest employers in the Wigan Borough, we at WWL feel we have an obligation to be a positive influence to our local community. It was with this in mind that we established the Social Responsibility Group so that we could initiate and support worthwhile community activities like this project at Woodfield Primary School. Race to Rio

It has been an absolute privilege to witness the SRG team in devising and supporting the Race to Rio project and it has been truly encouraging and heart-warming to see the positive impact it has had on the pupils.”

Head Teacher of Woodfield Primary School, Mrs Julie Charnley, said, “We are really grateful that WWL chose our school to be the pilot for this initiative.  The children, staff and parents have really risen to the challenge and have been measuring their ‘steps’ weekly and, by combining the overall steps have now almost walked the distance to from Wigan to Rio de Janeiro.

This really has been a partnership approach and we been delighted to welcome the support of Metrofresh, Inspiring Healthy Lifestyles, Wigan Athletic, Public Health and Wigan Warriors.  Working collaboratively has enabled our project to develop to and include many other positive healthy lifestyle choices, including the daily mile, healthy eating projects, art activities and many competitive sporting events. It has been an absolute delight to see the children and their families become so actively involved in the 'Race to Rio' challenge.

It has proved beneficial in lots of different ways by improving their physical health and promoting a healthy lifestyle with the added bonus of educating them about the culture of other countries in a fun way”