The appealing scent of cookies permeated through the empty halls of Oak Bay High as a group of passionate high school students committed their time and enthusiasm for an international cause.
After school concluded that day, the students convened to bake goods for an upcoming fundraiser.
“Creating an environment where every child can have equal opportunities is critical for eliminating poverty and inequality,” said Robert Lee, who conceived the idea. “We are endeavouring to provide students with vital equipment for their education.”
After learning about the abysmal conditions in the rural communities of Third World countries, Lee went to Gloria Li to ask for help. The pair went to their school to enlist the aid of students who shared their vision, hoping to fundraise money and supplies.
“Education is a key step in breaking the poverty cycle,” said Li. “It gives impoverished families a way to choose a new future.”
Li organized a bake sale as a preliminary fundraiser, seeking help from peers including Astrid Jimenez, Stacy Zhang, Emma Hou, Nicole Ma, Claire Cheng and Rebecca Xiong. Li also received an overwhelmingly positive response from her teachers at Oak Bay High. Lana Rahn provided funding, Tracy Yarr supplied amenities and Chad Jacques bought the unsold cookies.
“We managed to raise just under $40,” noted Li. That is enough to fund stationary purchases for 39 pupils to use for one year. “I never realized how big of a difference a dollar could make.”
“We are grateful for the profuse support we have received from Oak Bay High School,” added Lee. “We see this as a stepping stone for more contributions to the global community.”
The students are now planning to extend this initiative to include areas for donating school supplies and gently used books, and are open to suggestions and feedback from the community.