Castlecliff School pupils will soon hand over 186 cans of food to the Salvation Army's food bank.

Led by teacher aide Nina Miller, a group of Year 6 pupils organised a mufti day where pupils could bring along a can in exchange for wearing mufti.

Castlecliff School was one of 155 schools taking part in Cans For Good, a drive to replenish the Salvation Army food bank's stores ahead of Christmas.

Pupil Michaela Thomas said the group made a notice about the food drive to give to all the pupils, and also went to talk to some of the classes about the food drive.

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"The school did it last year, and we wanted to do better than we did last year," pupil Tyde George said.

And they succeeded, drawing in 50 more cans of food than last year.

Jesse Carson said the cans would be given to the food bank and then distributed to families struggling to put food on the table.

"It's so everyone can have something nice to eat at Christmas," he said.

The group consisted of Michaela, Tyde, Jesse, Lexus Nuku, Aurora Dahya, Dante Papworth and Talia Brokerspooner.

Two other Whanganui schools, Faith City and St Mary's, are also taking part in Cans For Good.

Salvation Army head of social services Pam Waugh said Christmas is an extremely difficult time for many families.

She said Salvation Army food banks around the country are struggling with being low on stock and high on demand high.

"The collection and education campaign run by the Sallies in partnership with Wattie's will help restock shelves in the lead-up to Christmas."

Ms Waugh said last year, the Salvation Army provided more than 58,000 food parcels to help Kiwis in need.