Thursday, July 24, 2008

Students Help to Change the World - One Child at a Time

Twelve Ajax High School seniors from Ontario pulled together to change the world...One child at a time.

Written by their teacher Ms. Lacy:

How it all began....two students named Jalal and Cassie were taught by Ms. Jennifer Cassano during the semester I was still on parental leave with my daughter. After learning about attachment theory, what happens around the world with children in orphanages, and, of course, learning about my daughter who became part of my family on July 31, 2006, they decided they wanted to make a difference. When I returned to work in February, Ms. Cassano and I spoke and decided we would help them to make a group. I surveyed my classes to get volunteers and that was how we formed our group that we named after your association.

"Love Without Boundaries"...I think showing them a picture of my little sweetie also helped! We all got together to make a plan, and it was decided that they would sign up each week to sell cupcakes in the front foyer every week. Students rotated from week to week, sharing the tasks of baking and selling. From February to June they did this...making the $725 they donated. We made display boards that listed facts about China and the orphanages, as well as photos I had photocopied out of a book. Also, each week they made an announcement during homeroom to raise awareness about this important cause. They are really such a wonderful group of students!!!! We had a party to celebrate in June, and of course my daughter, Lienna Mei, who attended was a big hit! They really love her and all my stories about her that are so relevant to the course I teach called "Issues in Human Growth and Development."

The students who were part of this group are: Alana, Savannah, Jennifer, Sarah, Ally, Jalal, Cassie, Jodi, Kristin, Julia, Balynn, and Brittany. The teacher advisors were Ms. Jennifer Cassano and me, Ms. Jennifer Lacy.

Thank you, Ajax High Students, for giving of yourselves every week. Any amount given helps, but what you have raised is enough to fund bed 11 at Heartbridge Pediatric Rehabilitation Unit for three full months. You have much to be proud of! Currently in that bed is a sweet little girl who is truly in need of some tender loving care. Three months of the intense medical and physical attention she will receive at Heartbridge will make such a huge difference in her life. I am confident that by taking the time and the energy to think beyond the walls of your own home and your own school that you have not only impacted the life of one precious orphaned child, but what you have learned will forever impact your lives as well. Well done!

Wendy Petersen, R.N.
Heartbridge Coordinator