STUDENTS from Darwen Academy are set to make a difference to people in the local community.

Almost 500 students are set to help over the course of the two day ‘Stand Out in Darwen’ event.

The initiative is being led by Lauren Davies, co-ordinator and programme designer for students’ physical, social and emotional wellbeing, at the school.

Among the projects lined up so far are: * Creating art works and cleaning up at Witton Park, Blackburn and Sunnyhurst Woods, Darwen.

* Cleaning up, making and filling planters in Redvers Road, Darwen.

* Helping out the elderly during an IT coffee morning at the Academy.

* Handing out flyers designed by students requesting items for Age UK shop.

Mayor of Blackburn with Darwen Coun Karimeh Foster, who is a Darwen councillor, said it was a good project.

She said: “It will teach the kids to communicate with other people and work with people of different ages.

“It will help them to listen to and learn from other people in the community.

“Children can learn a great deal by going out of the classroom.

“I am glad the kids have been given this opportunity to get an experience of life.”

Darwen Town Council deputy chairman Coun Steve Duncan said: “If it gets them out into the communities it is bound to help.

“But the great challenge is getting the kids to help outside of school hours.

“As long as the project doesn’t detract from their learning it is a good thing.”

The event will take place on March 29 and 30.