Farm an­i­mals for Christ­mas

Cabot Acad­emy class raises money, learns valu­able les­son

The Compass - - SPORTS - BY MELISSA JENK­INS Melissa.jenk­ins@tc.tc

When Jackie King’s Grade 6 class at Cabot Acad­emy de­cided to raise money this Christ­mas to pur­chase farm an­i­mals in a de­vel­op­ing coun­try, stu­dents were ex­cited.

“There wasn’t one per­son who didn’t want to par­tic­i­pate,” King ex­plained. “And I don’t think there’s any­body here who hasn’t con­trib­uted to the fund. So it’s pretty awesome for 11 year olds.”

Stu­dents from the Western Bay school raised $190, which is part of a matched do­na­tion of four-times the raised amount. A to­tal of $950 will go to­wards pur­chas­ing chick­ens, pigs, sheep and goats.

Gifts of Hope, the project spon­sored by Plan Canada, has dozens of op­tions for in­di­vid­u­als, busi­nesses or groups to do­nate. Other projects in­clude pur­chas­ing bed nets, school sup­plies, in­di­vid­ual an­i­mals and sports and gam­ing equip­ment. There’s even the op­tion to do­nate to­wards a birth cer­tifi­cate, which some don’t re­ceive in the de­vel­op­ing world.

There is even a sur­plus of $30 still in the class’ col­lec­tion bot­tle. That will roll over into the next project the class will be tak­ing part in.

“We’re rais­ing money af­ter Christ­mas,” said stu­dent Ta­tum De­laney. “We’re go­ing to start rais­ing money for a baby buf­falo.”

The do­na­tion needed for a baby buf­falo is $250.

Stu­dents of­ten gave their change from re­cess or lunch, and some brought in do­na­tions from home ev­ery day. But this wasn’t just about col­lect­ing money for the stu­dents, it was about learn­ing valu­able lessons about giv­ing back.

“We talked about gifts that money can’t buy,” King said. “I know this isn’t the same thing be­cause it is some­thing that costs money, but it is the gen­eros­ity of the chil­dren.”

The big theme in the Grade 6 class­room this year has been so­cial re­spon­si­bil­ity. It’s been in­te­grated into all the core curriculum, and it helps the stu­dents understand what is hap­pen­ing in other parts of the world.

“We’ve been talk­ing about im­mi­grants from Syria and how lucky we are to be Cana­dian,” said King.

The class chimed in with an en­thu­si­as­tic, “YES!”

King feels like she definitely helped guide the class to­wards un­der­stand­ing so­cial re­spon­si­bil­ity and global cit­i­zen­ship.

I think any time you have the op­por­tu­nity to make some­body else’s life bet­ter; it’s a good thing to do. — Jackie King

“The big­gest rea­son why I wanted to get in­volved was be­cause well, they’re poor fam­i­lies and they have noth­ing,” said Hannah Hoyles. “And when we cook, some peo­ple throw away food, and they’ve got no food.”

Tyson Tra­verse weighed in on how it felt to be a part of such a project.

“It makes me feel happy that we know that they’re go­ing to get an­i­mals so they can get money and get food,” he said. “Be­cause we can just go out to a gro­cery story and buy it. But they can’t.”

For now, King will leave the bot­tle on her desk, and the stu­dents pledged to keep drop­ping off their change when­ever they have any. The project was a suc­cess, and helped the stu­dents get a grasp on what they say is the spirit of Christ­mas.

“What we do in our lit­tle com­mu­nity can af­fect some­body in a coun­try we don’t even know about,” King noted. “And it makes their lives bet­ter. I think any time you have the op­por­tu­nity to make some­body else’s life bet­ter; it’s a good thing to do.”

PHOTO BY MELISSA JENK­INS/THE COM­PASS

Grade 6 stu­dents at Cabot Acad­emy raised money to buy farm an­i­mals for peo­ple in a de­vel­op­ing coun­try.

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