A 13-year-old student is heading to Africa next year to help schools improve their education.

Ellie Peters is just one of 23 Kimbolton School students heading to Ghana to help out Essaman Junior High School as part of the schools' partnership scheme.

As well as painting classrooms and other jobs to improve the school, Ellie will travel to a rain forest and get to know the villagers.

Ahead of her trip, Ellie has been partnered with Theresa Davies, who is in the third form in the Elmina school, to get her accustomed to what life is like.

She said: "Recently we have had two teachers from Essaman visiting Kimbolton, teaching us about life in Ghana and at the school. They also taught us a few basic words in their local language and how to shake hands 'Ghanaian-style'.

"I wanted to go as I will have a great opportunity to learn and experience what their culture and daily life are like. Being there will help me understand what life is like for people who don't have as much as we do and also learn to appreciate more what we do have."

She is hoping to raise £2,000 to pay for her trip and has already held cake sales, car washing days, shopping bag packing, and sold clothes and CDs.

Ellie, of Hampton Close, Fenstanton, is also going to hold a car boot sale and is planning a sponsored walk.

She added: "To go on this trip we have to raise as much of the £2,000 as we can. All of the money goes to the pupils out in Ghana, for their schooling and their general welfare.

"I am really excited and looking forward to going to Ghana: it will be a great, once-in-a-lifetime experience for me and I am sure I will never forget it."

Kimbolton teacher Claire Kennedy is leading the partnership. She said: "This is but the start of what we hope will be a long-term relationship with Essaman United School.

"We hope that there will be an annual cultural exchange visit plus collaborative projects, joint fund-raising and Ghanaian-themed teaching in a range of academic subjects. As such, the partnership will be fully integrated into school life at both Kimbolton and Essaman United."

INFORMATION: To sponsor Ellie drop your donations off at 31 Hampton Close, Fenstanton, the collection box in the King William IV or e-mail peters_ellie@hotmail.co.uk