PUPILS at a Penistone school are helping the homeless this winter.

The pupils of St John’s Primary School, Penistone, have been working hard to collect and organise rucksacks full of essential items for the homeless.

The school is serving as the Penistone collection point for the wider Barnsley Rucksack Project, with everything donated being shared across the borough.

Teacher Julia Jones said: “A few years ago we got the offer to help collect.

“It’s anything the homeless might need and doesn’t have to be new, we’re happy if things are slightly used.

“We try to support one charity each month – we can look at bigger things like Children in Need but it’s always good to help local causes.

“The thing is trying to not make it about money, so something like this is great because parents can bring in old hats, or gloves, anything that they want to clear out.”

Over the course of this week, the school will be open for any locals to come and place donations, before the collection ends on Friday.

They are looking for anything that may help people keep warm or clean during winter, such as sleeping bags, waterproof coats, toiletries and tinned food.

“It’s been going brilliantly, the children have set it all up,” Julia added.

“They’ve worked out how to store and organise everything so we can transport it easily.

“They’re responding really well, they know how important it is to support local charities and we’ve been trying to explain to them how not everyone can have a home.”