A DINAS Powys girl is hoping to fulfil a lifetime ambition of teaching in an orphanage in Africa.

Stanwell School pupil Emma Leering is hoping to raise more than £5,600 so that she can spend a year teaching in an orphanage in Malawi from this summer.

Emma, 17, has raised a total of £3,000 so far, with bag packing at Tesco’s at Penarth Marina on New Year’s Eve raising an impressive £912 and a recent cake sale also raising £780.

“It’s something I have always wanted to do since I was little,” she said.

“My parents are South African and I have always loved Africa and wanted to live there.”

She added: “I have always wanted my own orphanage and to live and teach in an orphanage.”

The primary school children that Emma will be teaching will range from two to 10 years old, while there will also be adults in their 30’s that have never had an education learning at the orphanage.

“It’s a bit scary but I’m very excited about it,” she said.

“Everyone keeps telling me I’ll be coming back a different person.”

After her year teaching in Malawi, which is being organised by the Project Trust charity, Emma plans on studying Geography and Development Studies at University and hopes that her experience gained from living and working in the orphanage will benefit her future career.

“I want to make sure it’s something I want to do first,” she said.

“I think it will be a rewarding experience in one of the poorest parts of Africa.”

Emma, of Cardiff Road, added: “In the future I would love to get into charity work.

“I would love to be someone that organises projects and co-ordinates with other charities.”

Emma has already gone through a rigorous selection process after travelling to Coll, a remote Hebridean Island, to ensure she was prepared for a year living in Africa.

Emma is also planning or organising a fashion show at the end of March and a swishing evening, where people pay an entrance fee and swap unwanted nearly new items, later this year.

She also plans on appealing to charitable trusts, more cake sales, a charity event with auction and more bag packing.

To sponsor Emma go to http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/emmamalawi

You can also keep up to date with her progress on facebook at ‘Help Emma Get to Malawi’ or twitter at @EmmaToMalawi