A GROUP of sixth formers have been helping street children during a three week trip to India.

The group of eight girls, five boys and two staff from Beaminster School undertook charity work and travelled 18,500km around the centre and north of the country.

One of the main reasons for the trip was to visit two Indian charities that Beaminster School has been supporting for 16 years.

They are the The Asha Deep Foundation in the slums on the outskirts of Delhi and a leprosy community near Nagpur.

Gilly Poulten, who led the trip with Steve Bassett, said: “Throughout the trip these Beaminster students were a credit to their school, families and community.

“They were facing challenges, situations and environments unlike anything they have ever experienced before and possibly unlikely to experience ever again.

“They showed compassion and sensitivity, they worked hard and made a real difference to others less fortunate than themselves. I am immensely proud of them.”

The party arrived in Delhi before heading for the Asha Deep Foundation.

It rescues children from the streets and provides them with a home in their orphanage, food, an education, healthcare as well as clothes and their personal needs.

It also runs a school and numerous outreach projects within the slums.

The group also travelled to the leprosy community in a rural setting where students decorated wards and painted folk art on the walls to brighten them up for the ageing residents.

Year 13 student Flossie Wright said: “To see the delight on these leprosy sufferers faces as we transformed their wards was fantastically rewarding.”

Ryan Strong, whose sentiment was echoed throughout the group, added: “It was humbling and inspiring, actually seeing the difference we were making to the lives of others.”