Sunderland College becomes winter wonderland for festive fundraiser

Santa Claus and Buddy the elf with 23-month-old Zac Guthrie and his dad, Lee

Santa Claus and Buddy the elf with 23-month-old Zac Guthrie and his dad, Lee

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Sunderland College was transformed into a winter wonderland as students and staff welcomed families to a special festive fundraising event.

Santa Claus and Buddy the Elf were on hand to greet youngsters and their parents at the college’s Christmas Charity Arts and Crafts Day, held in the Arts Academy at Bede Campus.

Fashion and clothing students Sarah Fuller and Hope Allon sold Christmas wreathes at the charity event

Fashion and clothing students Sarah Fuller and Hope Allon sold Christmas wreathes at the charity event

The event was organised by visual and performing arts staff and students and featured a host of fun-filled activities and entertainment for youngsters and their parents.

From carol singing and festive-themed flashmobs, to Disney dance sessions and drama workshops, the event also featured lots of seasonal stalls selling a range of Christmas decorations and cards designed by students.

The Arts Academy was transformed by art and design students who created a grotto for Santa and his elf, as well as a snowy winter wonderland scene, and decorated the building with giant handmade snowflakes and baubles.

All proceeds from the event and the college’s Christmas show, Jingle Bede, which raised a combined total of more than £450, will be handed to homeless charity Crisis, along with 11 sacks of clothes which have been donated by staff and students.

Dance students Chelsea Potts and Katie Wilson masquerade as Mr and Mrs Claus in the Arts Academy 'Winter Wonderland'

Dance students Chelsea Potts and Katie Wilson masquerade as Mr and Mrs Claus in the Arts Academy 'Winter Wonderland'

Jane Reed, head of visual and performing arts at Sunderland College, said: “The event was a truly magical experience for everyone involved and it was fantastic to welcome so many families to the college.

“The staff and students worked very hard to make it a success and they are thrilled that so much money has been raised for an excellent cause.”

Sunderland College offers one of the region’s largest range of school leaver, adult and higher education courses, as well as programmes for international students.

The college has strong links with businesses and offers a variety of employer-focused courses.

It boasts a 99% pass rate for the past seven years and has been awarded the national quality mark for advice and guidance four times in a row.