Com­ing Together on the Road­2Hope

The Hamilton Spectator - - OUR PULSE - JESSICA DEKKER, GRADE 10

When I woke up the day of the Road­2Hope 5k run, I must ad­mit I was ner­vous. I had never par­tic­i­pated in a char­ity run be­fore and I wasn’t sure what to ex­pect. Once ar­riv­ing at Con­fed­er­a­tion Park, my nerves be­gan to ease. It was a beau­ti­ful fall morn­ing, and there was a feel­ing of ex­cite­ment in the air. Then as the day con­tin­ued, I was pleas­antly sur­prised by the na­ture of the par­tic­i­pants.

One of the first things that I no­ticed was the di­ver­sity of peo­ple who had all come out to walk or run for a cause of their choice. While I was run­ning, I saw peo­ple of all ages, from young to old. It was in­cred­i­ble! The amount of sup­port that was felt in the crowd could not be ig­nored. Many would flash a smile, or say “You can do it” and

“You’re al­most there.” Ad­di­tion­ally, at the St. Joseph’s Villa Foun­da­tion tent, all the stu­dents from St. Mary Catholic Se­condary School were met with cheer­ful greet­ings and pos­i­tive re­marks. I found that this sup­port­ive at­ti­tude helped me finish the run with a strong sense of com­mu­nity and a smile on my face.

This year the goal for Team Villa was to raise enough money to pur­chase much needed gar­den se­cu­rity door sys­tems for res­i­dent home ar­eas. I’m very for­tu­nate that my grand­par­ents haven’t needed to ac­cess sup­port from a foun­da­tion such as the Villa, but I wanted to help raise funds for oth­ers who have fam­ily liv­ing there. Mr. Don David­son chal­lenged our school com­mu­nity to raise $2,000, which would fund the pur­chase of three new se­cu­rity door sys­tems, and thanks to the de­ter­mi­na­tion of my fel­low Cru­saders, we were able to sur­pass this goal!

The Road­2Hope helped me not only ap­pre­ci­ate the im­por­tance of par­tic­i­pat­ing in lo­cal char­ity events, but also showed me a prime ex­am­ple of what com­ing together for a com­mon cause truly means.

Self-Por­trait, acrylic on can­vas, by Josh Van­dergeer, Grade 12

Tes­sel­la­tions, pen­cil crayon on pa­per, by Em­i­lie Serro, Grade 9

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