A Year 9 student from St Francis Xavier School in Richmond has set his own “pedal power” challenge to help raise funds for his school’s Technology Department to supply face visors to key workers.

Dean Cunningham, aged 13, has been completing circuits on his bike every day during lockdown around the block where he lives in Catterick Garrison, and by the weekend had clocked up over 30 miles.

Inspired by the outstanding efforts of Colonel Tom Moore, Dean decided he wanted to turn his daily exercise routine into a sponsored ride to raise funds to help the NHS – and what better way than helping his school to make visors?  

Like many schools in the area, St Francis Xavier’s technology department took up the challenge to use resources in the school to produce face visors for local health and social care settings. 

So far more than 1,000 shields have been supplied and continue to be made as school staff turn out up to 150 a day, buying in additional materials to continue to meet demand.

Headteacher Stuart McGhee said: “Dean has selflessly given his time and effort to help our area’s health and care workers. This may be in an indirect way, but it is having maximum impact and I congratulate Dean on this outstanding gesture of kindness and ingenuity”.

One of the recipients is Tracey Smith, a midwife at the Friarage Maternity Centre and the Community Midwifery Team, which received a supply of visors from the school.

As well as midwives, other organisations helped by the school include GP practices, ambulance crews, district nurses, a prison, community first responders, carers in the community, an animal rescue centre and nine care homes.

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