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Red riders...Balfour Playcentre children George Stewart (2), Monty Blakely (5), Charlie Wairau (5), Luca Dillon (3), Robbie Breen (5), Pippa Duff (3) and Beauden Stewart (5) show their colours on Friday.

Children showed plenty of heart at a fundraising day at Balfour School and Balfour Playcentre on Friday.

School principal Louise Stevenson said the day raised awareness of congenital heart defects and funds for the charity Heart Kids New Zealand.

“Kids can take their wee bodies for granted,” Mrs Stevenson said.

“They are quite lucky, whereas some children aren’t so lucky.”

It was a cause close to home in the Balfour community.

“There’s a few local families affected by heart disease.”

Dressed in red, pupils came to school and gave donations to Heart Kids for which they received red arm bands.

Pupils learned about heart defects and prizes were given to winners of a colouring-in competition of a picture of “a heart with stitches”.

Junior pupils also joined up with the playcentre next door to go bike riding.

Playcentre members also supported the cause, with children wearing red and taking part in their own colouring competition.

They sold candles to fundraise in addition to making gold coin donations on the day.

Playcentre parent Kath Dillon said she had seen the Heart Kids charity doing great things in the community.

“It’s something no parent ever imagines for their child,” Mrs Dillon said.

“Whatever support they can get along their journey is invaluable.”

“Today was about raising awareness of this charity as well as funds.”