AN auction has raised thousands of pounds to help an African village which has been devastated by fire.

The event, organised by David Geldart, from the Bambisanani Partnership, raised £4175 for the community of Vumanhlamvu Primary School, in particular 21 children who lost everything in wildfires.

The auction included items from Geoff Hurst, Trevor Brooking, Alan Shearer, Wayne Rooney, Geoffrey Boycott, David Gower, Bob Willis, Leeds United, Leeds Rhinos and the Kaiser Chiefs. Aireborough Rotary has also made a donation.

A spokesman for the club said: “The nearest Rotary Club – Eshowe carried out a survey resulting in a need and resultant plea for funds to buy school uniforms, food parcels, blankets and building materials for housing repairs and rebuilds.

“The Aireborough Club will be making an initial donation to add to the impressive sporting memorabilia auction organised by David Geldart.”

On its website the Bambisanani Partnership says:”This funding will enable the partnership to meet the request for urgent help asked for by William Vilakazi the Principal of the school and as outlined by Eshowe Rotary Club.

“Working with William, the local community and Eshowe Rotary Club the partnership will now be able to provide the school uniforms, blankets, emergency food parcels required. It will also be able to provide the materials to rebuild the homes that were burnt to the ground.

“All the labour required for the building work will be provided by the local community. With thoughts of these children not just surviving but thriving the fund raising efforts will also enable help the partnership to provide reading books, sports equipment an other educational resources for the children affected and for Vumanhlamvu School.”

The Bambisanani Partnership was set up in 2006 between St Mary’s School in Menston and Mnyakanya High School which is based in one of South Africa’s most deprived rural areas. It now includes the University of Leeds and Leeds Trinity University as key members.

The partnership uses sport as a catalyst to promote education, health, global citizenship and leadership.