(Kenora and Red Lake, ON November 1, 2018) Students at St. John School are excited for snow after learning that their SJS Ski Club will receive $1,500 from the Tbaytel For Good Community Fund. The school is planning to use the money to purchase a waxing station and additional sets of cross-country skis to help them reach their goal of having enough skis for every child who wants to join the club.
"This money is going to have an impact on our ski season because last year we had to cut kids from the loppet because we didn't have enough skis," said Grade 7 student Olivia Ewen. "We are excited to get the fund so we can buy more skis for everyone to participate."
When the students learned that their submission made it to Tbaytel's shortlist, and they only had two weeks to rally the support of the community, they got to work right away. They did classroom visits, a radio interview with CKDR and they also put up posters and talked at a morning assembly.
The SJS SKi Club video closed out the competition with 13, 706 votes. While parents and grandparents were voting in Red Lake, 270 km away in Kenora the KCDSB community rallied behind St. John School.
"The Kenora Catholic community got behind St. John School in a big way," said Phyllis Eikre, Director of Education. "Many people were voting, every chance they had. Teachers had students voting in their classes, we had younger students voting from iPads, we had sports teams travelling to tournaments and voting while on the bus, and we had trustees and staff voting from home. We are one big family at Kenora Catholic and the whole family rallied for St. John School."
"It's just so amazing how people want to help our school earn this money and help kids to be able to ski. It just blows me away," said Olivia.
Ben Baranesky a Grade 7 student was just as excited by the support of the community. "It's really nice because the kids are getting to ski because of this money. In Kenora, they didn't have to vote but they did, and that is great. It's amazing that Kenora Catholic and everyone in the community helped to vote and we want to thank everyone for supporting us."
Ben and Olivia are part of a team of students from the SJS Ski Club who created a thank you video, to thank everyone for their support:
The fall 2018 Tbaytel for Good Community Fund campaign came to a close on October 30th, and the SJS Ski Club is one of six groups that will receive funding for a community project.