On Thursday, October 29th, CSPGNO students were united in a call to action at the UNIS (“United”) rally held at Collège Boréal. In a spirit of celebration, the UNIS rally brought together hundreds of participants for a day of awareness-raising and motivational presentations by speakers, activists and artists.
A remarkable act of generosity took place at the closing of this event. Following a moving presentation by Mrs. Helen Campbell, a double lung transplant patient and spokesperson for the #BeAnOrganDonor campaign (which has captured the attention of Justin Bieber and Ellen DeGeneres), École secondaire Hanmer’s “OuiCare” group presented via Skype a $1,000 donation to Tina Giroux-Proulx and her husband Joël Proulx, a graduate of E.S. Hanmer. Mrs. Giroux-Proulx suffers from pulmonary hypertension and is waiting for a double lung transplant. The donated funds will help to cover their expenses in Toronto and to believe that when people come together, great things are possible.
Since its foundation in June 2013, E. S. Hanmer’s OuiCare group has donated almost $15,000 to several good causes. To raise funds, this charity club with members ranging from grades 7 to 12 has held many campaigns: they have collected empty cans and bottles, Canadian Tire money and pennies, sold pastries and candygrams, and simply solicited donations. Their efforts have helped organizations such as Free the Children, Blue Door Soup Kitchen, Paws for Hope and others, as well as less fortunate families at Thanksgiving and Christmas. Once a month, the group helps out at Blue Door Soup Kitchen to prepare and serve meals. Last year, OuiCare was awarded the City of Greater Sudbury’s Civic Award, which recognizes remarkable volunteer groups.
The UNIS rally fulfilled the expectations of its numerous participants with a program of uplifting presentations by many special guests, including Anick Gervais, speaker and participant in the “Big Brother Canada” program, Anik Dennie, CSPGNO graduate and student at Laurentian University, Céleste Lévis, singer-songwriter and finalist in the program “La Voix”, aboriginal artists Janique Labelle and the Black Bull Moose Singers, Tristan Rhéaume-Jones, speaker for the organization Enfants entraide / Free the Children, Ryan Benoît, founder of the organization The Positive Inception, Hélène Campbell, double lung transplant patient and the pop rock band Automat. Their inspiring presentations motivated this gathering of ambitious students to go out and make a difference in the world. By sharing their experiences, stories and resources, the guest speakers inspired and empowered students to realize their full potential as agents for change, both locally and internationally.
Recognized for its keen sense of innovation and openness to the world, CSPGNO offers a French-language public education of the highest quality in eleven elementary schools and eight secondary schools in the communities of Markstay, Noëlville, Greater Sudbury, Elliot Lake, Sault Ste. Marie, Wawa, Dubreuilville, Marathon, Manitouwadge and Longlac. At CSPGNO, every child has the room to grow; there is a place for everyone!