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Chadwell Heath 12-year-old wins competition to design Barnado’s Christmas jumper

PUBLISHED: 12:00 19 December 2018

Caitlin Ely aged 12 with her winning design chosen by Barnado's.

Caitlin Ely aged 12 with her winning design chosen by Barnado's.

Archant

A 12-year-old girl from Chadwell Heath is over the moon after a drawing she made was turned into the design of a Christmas jumper for children’s charity Barnardo’s.

Caitlin Ely aged 12 with her winning design chosen by Barnado's together with staff Sabina Akhtar and Scott Roberts.Caitlin Ely aged 12 with her winning design chosen by Barnado's together with staff Sabina Akhtar and Scott Roberts.

Caitlin Ely was among a group of 10 children at Barnardo’s Wellbeing Hub on Granville Road in Ilford, who created several pieces of festive artwork as a fun seasonal activity.

To the delight of Caitlin, her winning drawing of a reindeer was chosen by staff at the hub.

The jumper has now gone on sale on the Barnardo’s Teespring online store and is also available to purchase in children’s sizes and as a baby grow.

Based in Barkingside, last year 301,100 children, young people, parents and carers were supported by Barnardo’s through more than 1,000 services across the UK, such as young carers, care leavers, foster carers and adoptive parents, training and skills or parenting classes.

Caitlin Ely aged 12 with her winning design chosen by Barnado's.Caitlin Ely aged 12 with her winning design chosen by Barnado's.

Last week nine other children who are always caring for others at the hub were taken on a trip of a lifetime when they were flown to meet Father Christmas in the North Pole.

Caitlin said: “I feel really proud that my drawing has been made into a real product. I got the idea from friends after they were playing the song Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer on the way to school.

“I enjoy coming to the hub to meet my friends and I hope the jumper can make lots of money for the charity so they can continue their good work.”

Robyn Guyton, development children’s services manager at Barnardo’s, said: “We are so proud of Caitlin and all of our young carers who showed off their artistic talent with this festive project.

Caitlin Ely aged 12 with her winning design chosen by Barnado's together with staff Sabina Akhtar and Scott Roberts.Caitlin Ely aged 12 with her winning design chosen by Barnado's together with staff Sabina Akhtar and Scott Roberts.

“The jumper looks fantastic and we hope it proves to be a popular seasonal purchase in the run up to Christmas with the proceeds helping to support our vital work.

“Our Wellbeing Hub in Redbridge provides supportive and fun activities to children and young people that have caring responsibilities. We work with our young carers to give them a break from their caring responsibilities and to offer opportunities to get involved in positive activities.”

To purchase the jumper visit https://teespring.com/stores/barnardos-store

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