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Caring West Shore middle schoolers expand social horizons

Spencer students raise cash for malaria battle with bake sale
Spencer middle school students Mikyla Birosh

Fudge for 50 cents, chocolate 75 cents, candies for a dollar.

At the end of a lunch-time bake sale, a group of Spencer middle school students added up sales from day one tabulating $124.60. More importantly to them, said 13-year-old Grade 8 student Morgana Adby, the total meant 12 bed nets for children in tropical countries including those in Africa, to help curb the spread of of a deadly disease that accounts for approximately 200,000 newborn deaths every year.

“There is a lot of talk of ebola but malaria kills a child every minute so we decided that is something we should really focus on and all our money from the bake sale is (for them),” she said. “A bed net is $10; that is pretty cheap to help save lives.”

Adby spent an evening at home baking cookies to bring to the two-day sale, while others in the social action club joined in making a variety of sweet treats and baked goods. Undertaken over a 25-minute span during lunch break, the sale was run by student volunteers dedicated to bringing about social change in the world.

“It makes me feel good. It’s one thing to feel sad about these different issues going on, but it’s another to do something about it,” Adby said. “Even if I am not doing a lot, I am doing something and that makes me feel better about it as a person.”

Led by teacher Jen Nixon, the club of Grade 7 to 9 students has also collected donations for the Goldstream Food Bank and families in India. This time they partnered with Plan Canada’s Spread the Net campaign to help stop a disease that was eradicated from Canada 50 years ago.

“I am so inspired by these kids. They come up with an idea, they want to help, and they just do it,” Nixon said. “For me as a teacher, it makes me so happy to see there are teenagers that are doing things for other people, not just thinking about themselves. (I am hoping) this will inspire them to go forth in their journey in life and take part in social action initiatives and help stand up for one another.”

Adby hopes their work now is just the beginning. “What we are doing here is essentially getting involved in whatever way we can and as we are right now,” she said. “As kids, it is a small amount, but we are still making an impact. It’s very, very important to do this (now), so when we grow up we are (going to be) ready.”

Arnold Lim

About the Author: Arnold Lim

I'm an award-winning photojournalist, videographer, producer, and director.
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