PUPILS at Linnvale Primary have been giving themselves intense challenges in the name of a boy they’ve sponsored for nine years in Uganda.

On Friday the entire school pledged to stand for the entire day to raise funds, while an earlier “Penny War” contest had to be cut short because youngsters reportedly were taking it so seriously.

The activities are to back Matthew, who was once a street kid but who is now in school with a bright future.

Matthew is top in his class of 94 pupils and Linnvale youngsters have been learning about his life and others through their “rights respecting committee” and the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child in all classrooms.

The committee, which includes pupils from all classes, invited the Post to a press conference about their work ahead of the “sponsored stand for school”.

Belle Thomson, in P5, told us: “Matthew is someone we have helped over the years. He was originally in the street.”

Anna Elliott added some children can’t go to school because they have other jobs to do for their families. She wants to help Matthew so he doesn’t lose his position and be back living on the street.

Pupil Evan McLean said: “I’m going to stay in school so I can get a better job. All his life Matthew has been desperate to go to school.”

The school raised more than £1,100 for Matthew and others at the Dwelling Places charity two years ago.

Acting principal teacher Donna Macdonald previously spent a year with the organisation.

She said: “We ensure everyone is respecting rights to clean water, rights to learn, the right to go to school. Matthew is doing really well. We have been looking at the Global Development Goals as well.

"We have realised our voice is quite important.”