Small Island School Makes Big Impact

Written by Ana Fonseca

What a great beginning to our school year! After completing three fundraising projects, we were determined to begin a new project that focused on healthcare. We chose to focus on the health and well-being of the people of Nicaragua.

With tremendous inspiration from WE Day, we dedicated ourselves to the We Create Change penny drive, sponsored by RBC. Our Youth Action Team made posters, public service announcements and presentations to each class promoting the campaign and creating a buzz of interest. The school was electric with energy. We had pennies coming in from kids’ piggy banks, family penny jars and even the Centre Island wishing well fountain. The Grade 5/6 class wrapped up our drive by taking a field trip to the Royal Bank of Canada on Queens Quay to deliver the pennies. What a great reception we received!

At the same time, the Youth Action Team was also promoting the We Scare Hunger campaign. We collected approximately 440 pounds of food at the docks during Halloween week. Teams of kids, teachers and parents volunteered their time from 8:00 to 8:30 every morning. With posters in hand and homemade buttons saying, “Ask me about Hunger in Toronto,” we educated our school community and collected food.

One inspirational moment that occurred at our school was on November 1.While the rest of the school was suffering from candy overload and reaching into their bags for treats before class started, Nicholas, a Grade 6 student, walked into class carrying four grocery bags full of food. He had decided to trick or treat for canned goods rather than candy. He alone collected 40 pounds of food. Nicholas has shown us that one person truly can make a difference.

Every year, the Island community hosts a craft fair called The Christmas Boutique at the Algonquin Island Association clubhouse in Toronto. Islanders and artisans sell a variety of items such as crafts, jams, artwork and quilts. Traditionally, the Grade 5/6 class is responsible for the operation of the cantina. The kids volunteer their time to serve chili, chili dogs, coffee and treats throughout the course of the day. This year, all of the money raised will support our new healthcare fundraiser for Nicaragua. We raised a total of $1400.00: a super start to our project!


Join us as We Create Change and bring clean water to 100,000 people. Order your penny bag at