Car­bon­ear boys to at­tend We Day

In­vi­ta­tion to Halifax event in recog­ni­tion of a good deed they per­formed

The Compass - - SPORTS - BYMELISSA JENK­INS Melissa.jenk­

It’s been an ex­cit­ing few months for three young men from Car­bon­ear.

This past Au­gust, An­drew Green, who is 14, Josh Grif­fin ( 13) and An­thony Griff in ( 11) re­ceived provincewide at­ten­tion af­ter self­lessly fix­ing five-year-old Ben Clarke’s beat up go-cart, which had been van­dal­ized.

The boys felt bad, took the go-cart home, fixed it up and re­turned it to the fam­ily the same day.

The boys had no idea how far their story would reach and how many peo­ple it would touch, un­til last week, when they learned their story was shared by thou­sands of peo­ple and reached as far as Van­cou­ver in the west, Texas in the south and the United King­dom in the east.

We Day nom­i­na­tion

In Septem­ber, the three Good Sa­mar­i­tans were nom­i­nated for an event in Nova Sco­tia by phone com­pany Telus — one of the event’s big­gest spon­sors —called “We Day.”

We Day is an event that hap­pens in­ter­na­tion­ally to hon­our teens for their con­tri­bu­tion to help­ing the world be­come a bet­ter place. This year, Halifax will be the first city in At­lantic Canada to host the event. Tick­ets must be earned and can­not be bought. The event will take place Nov. 27. Jac­qui Dupont — one of Telus’ rep­re­sen­ta­tives for New­found­land and Labrador — read the go-cart story on so­cial me­dia and im­me­di­ately thought the boys would make ex­cel­lent am­bas­sadors for the prov­ince at the event.

“When I read (The Com­pass) ar­ti­cle, my thoughts were that th­ese three boys are the epit­ome of kind­ness, self­less­ness and com­mu­nity spirit,” Jac­qui wrote in an email to The Com­pass Aug. 29.

The nom­i­na­tion was kept a se­cret from the boys be­cause the par­ents and Jac­qui de­cided if they won, it should be a sur­prise.

It was more than a month be­fore the re­sults were an­nounced.

Pro­vin­cial rep­re­sen­ta­tion

The par­ents were told in ad­vance that the win­ners had been cho­sen, and their boys would be go­ing to Halifax to rep­re­sent New­found­land and Labrador. They did not tell the boys.

On Oct. 22, Car­bon­ear Mayor Sam Slade and the Green and Grif­fin fam- ilies met at the Con­cep­tion Bay Re­gional Com­mu­nity Cen­tre to hear the news.

Once in the coun­cil cham­ber, Jac­qui told the boys they, “touched my heart” with their story, and she couldn’t think of any­one else she could have nom­i­nated.

The boys lit up with ex­cite­ment when they heard they were cho­sen, and would be go­ing to Halifax to ex­pe­ri­ence one of the big­gest youth events in the world.

Some 13,000 stu­dents are ex­pected to at­tend the At­lantic Canada event, and the three boys were the first con­firmed to be go­ing from this prov­ince. Two uniden­ti­fied schools were also asked to at­tend, but it is un­known right now if they will.

To top off the sur­prise, Jac­qui ex­plained her com­pany was go­ing to cover ac­com­mo­da­tions for the fam­i­lies while they are at­tend­ing, and as an ad­di­tional bonus, the boys and their fam­i­lies will visit the Halifax mil­i­tary base, high­lighted by a tour of a sub­ma­rine.

The boys ac­knowl­edged they didn’t think they needed the recog­ni­tion, but were ex­cited to be at­tend­ing.


Al­though the ac­com­mo­da­tions have been cov­ered, the boys still need to cover trans­porta­tion costs, in­clud­ing flights and trans­porta­tion from Halifax In­ter­na­tional Air­port to down­town Halifax for the three of them and one mem­ber of each of their fam­i­lies.

They will be­gin fundrais­ing in the com­ing weeks, try­ing to de­crease the out-of-pocket ex­pense they may en­counter for the trip.

Ar­range­ments are be­ing made to sell tick­ets on a tech­nol­ogy bas­ket — a col­lec­tion of ele­cronic items — and more fundrais­ing plans will be an­nounced.

Mayor Slade said the town will do ev­ery­thing it can to help out the boys to en­sure they get to at­tend, and in­vited them to at­tend a coun­cil meet­ing in the com­ing weeks for an in­tro­duc­tion to the coun­cil mem­bers.

“Th­ese boys are the ones who will be sit­ting in those chairs, run­ning the show in Car­bon­ear some­day,” Slade said, point­ing to his seat in the cham­ber.

“The town is so proud for what you have done, and we know you have in­flu­enced a lot of peo­ple to start do­ing things for oth­ers.”

The boys will be see­ing some big names in mu­sic and many mo­ti­va­tional speak­ers through­out the day­long event.

Some speak­ers in­clude Martin Luther King III, Molly Burke — a visu­ally im­paired mo­ti­va­tional speaker — and Craig and Marc Kielburger, who founded Free the Chil­dren. There will be per­for­mances by Cana­dian band Hedley, Nova Sco­tian rap­per Clas­si­fied, the Kenyan Boys Choir, who sang at U.S. Pres­i­dent Barack Obama’s 2009 inau­gu­ra­tion, and many more.

The boys were sur­prised but ex­cited, say­ing they can’t wait to rep­re­sent the prov­ince in Halifax in Novem­ber.

Photo by Melissa Jenk­ins/spe­cial to The Com­pass

The fam­i­lies of three boys who were ac­knowl­edged for a self­less act met at the Con­cep­tion Bay Re­gional Com­mu­nity Cen­tre in Car­bon­ear last month to an­nounce to the boys they would be at­tend­ing a stu­dent hu­man­i­tar­ian event in Halifax. They were, from left, Jac­qui Dupont (Telus rep­re­sen­ta­tive), Ken Grif­fin, Karen Grif­fin, Ja­cob Grif­fin, Josh Grif­fin, Jen­nifer Grif­fin, An­thony Grif­fin, Paul Grif­fin, An­drew Green, Sheila Green and Mayor Sam Slade.

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