A teenager who knocked down walls and shifted bricks in temperatures of up to 50 degrees centigrade while building an orphanage said it was a 'life-changing experience.'

Katriona Fisher (18), was one of a group of young people who spent nine days in India last month helping build a home for children who have been orphaned or abandoned.

The group, working in Little Rann of Katchchh, had to demolish walls, build foundations and pass bricks along a chain gang for hours during the project run by the charity Fulcrum.

Katriona spoke about her trip, which she raised £3,000 to take part in, at a presentation to staff and students at Uxbridge College, where she is taking A-levels in biology, chemistry and psychology, on 30 November.

Katriona said: "I had an absolutely amazing time. This experience has changed my outlook on life and made me grateful for the things I have that I didn't fully appreciate before I went - the luxury of hot water for one and being able to go to school beyond the age of 10 for another. The experience was one of a kind and a life-changing experience.

"One of the hardest things was the hard physical labour - no matter how fit you are, nobody had done anything like it."

Alastair Mullins, Head of The Academy, the department at Uxbridge College which teaches A-Levels and GCSEs, said: "Katriona has shown real character by taking part in this project - it made us all feel tired just listening to what she had done! I am sure with the amount of determination she has shown she will have no trouble getting good results in her A-Levels."


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