School furniture charity makes plea for donations

A shipping container filled with office chairs and desks.
The Stoke-on-Trent charity is appealing for more donations of chairs, desks, whiteboards and computer equipment [BBC]

Schools, community centres and families across the UK are being asked to donate their old furniture to pupils in under-funded schools abroad.

Taxi driver Anwar Hussain started the project after revisiting his old school in Kashmir in 2004, only to find that conditions had not improved since he attended.

His charity, Andrhal Welfare Trust, is based in Stoke-on-Trent but is willing to make collections from anywhere in the UK.

"The world has changed now," said Mr Hussain, "Why shouldn't these children have better education facilities."

The charity has sent donations to various countries where pupils are in need.

His first shipping container cost £3,000 to transport from Stoke-on-Trent to Kashmir, but that same journey now costs £5,000.

Mr Hussain is looking for donations from the public to pay for these journeys.

He said: "I never been stuck for the donations because people have seen what I've done.

"When they see things are done in the proper way then they do donate."

Eleven pupils sit around a large circular desk with their teacher.
From Longton to Kashmir: one of the schools benefitting from furniture donations [Andrhal Welfare Trust]

Emma Evans helps with the donations and said it was "great" to see photos of the schools they help furnish.

"Without us the conditions would be the same so get donating," she said.

Mr Hussain has asked people wishing to repurpose items to contact Andrhal Welfare Trust via phone or social media.

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