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Renfrewshire mascot returns from Kenyan travels

Renfrewshire mascot returns from Kenyan travels.

Renfrewshire’s schools continue to strengthen their ties with Kenya, Renfrewshire’s second Commonwealth team.

Little Rory, a smaller version of Renfrewshire’s much loved Active Schools mascot, has travelled to Kenya and back in the company of UK based charity, Vision Africa, which supports vulnerable and disadvantaged children in the Republic.

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Over three days, Little Rory and Kirsty McCullich from Vision Africa toured 10 primary schools and one high school with tales from their African adventures.

Little Rory passed into the care of Kirsty during her first round of visits to Renfrewshire’s schools to help them engage with and create links with their Kenyan counterparts.

Kirsty McCullich, Fundraising and Communications Officer said: “Vision Africa is delighted to partner with Renfrewshire Council to promote links between Scotland and Kenya. We were proud to involve both Rory and postcards from Glencoats Primary School in the official Queen’s Baton Relay celebrations in Nairobi.”

Through the adventures of Rory the Bear children are encouraged to learn about the differences and similarities between their own lives and those of the children in Kenya.

Regular postcards have been sent to and from Renfrewshire detailing Rory’s travels across the globe as well as providing information about how pupils can interact with each other.

Councillor Jim Harte, Convener of Renfrewshire Council’s Sport, Leisure and Culture Policy Board said: “Renfrewshire has been allocated Kenya and Papua New Guinea by Sportscotland as its second teams to support during the 2014 Commonwealth Games. This gives us the opportunity to develop a lasting connection between these countries, beyond the Games, that can help our pupils to become more globally aware citizens”.

Courtesy of Renfrewshire Council.

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Schools catering manager celebrates 30 years of service

Schools catering manager celebrates 30 years of service.

Schoolchildren and staff at Kirklandneuk Primary School have gathered to celebrate Renfrewshire’s longest serving catering manager.

Lorraine Kingsley has been part of Renfrewshire Council’s schools catering team for an impressive 30 years and has been a familiar face at the Kirklandneuk Primary serving hatch for 26 of them.

Joining the service aged 16, Lorraine has witnessed and embraced the development of the schools meals service, which has moved on from mince, tatties and tinned fruits to today’s more flexible and inspiring approach.

She has been instrumental in the council’s effort to transform its school meals service with Kirklandneuk being one of the first primary schools in Renfrewshire to introduce a ‘grab & go’ style menu with twice weekly ‘dine in days’.

The new formats have proved popular with pupils, and where implemented, have lead to an increase in the numbers of young people opting for school meals. Lorraine has been championing ‘grab & go’ in neighbouring schools so even more children can benefit from the increased variety.

Councillor Eddie Devine, Convener of Renfrewshire Council’s Environment Policy Board, said: “It’s thanks to the input from dedicated employees like Lorraine that we’ve been able to improve and update our school catering service. Moving away from the traditional format of a sit-down meal served in the dinner hall to a more informal, self-serve approach has been highly effective. It is a lot more appealing for pupils and gives our young people access to a greater range of healthy, nutritious and affordable food options.

Councillor Devine joined Head Teacher Shirley Wieland, pupils and other council staff to surprise Lorraine with a bouquet and a handmade cake baked earlier by members the council’s catering team based at Montrose Care Home.

Courtesy of Renfrewshire Council.