$5,000 worth of joyful tears 0
Group members Grade 10 Haliburton Highlands Secondary School students Jamie Scheffel, left seated, Montana Griffin, Jessie Burk, Taylor Sands laugh as they watch Allana Paul get accidentally hung up on while experiencing difficulties using the phone, attempting to give the 4Cs Food Bank the good news of winning $5,000 through the Youth and Philanthropy Initiative in the school office on Wednesday, May16. Their group was among four finalists who presented to an audience of their peers and were
They couldn't believe it when they heard it.
And minutes after the announcement they were still in disbelief, practically unable to breathe, giggling and laughing in anticipation of telling the good news to the 4Cs food bank.
The Haliburton Highlands Secondary School Grade 10 students Jessie Burk, Allana Paul, Jamie Scheffel, Taylor Sands and Montana Griffin earned $5,000 with their Youth and Philanthropy Initiative (YPI) presentation on the 4Cs food bank.
They were one of four Grade 10 finalist groups who presented to an audience of their peers at the Northern Lights Performing Arts Pavilion on Wednesday, May 16.
They presented on the 4Cs to earn the YPI grant, which motivates Grade 9 and 10 students in Ontario, Quebec and New Brunswick to learn about local charities' importance and function within the community, empowering students to advocate for a chosen charity.
Alanna didn't expect to win after seeing the other presentations.
"Seeing the other presentations you kind of start to doubt yourself. Well, how can we compete against them? They have someone playing the keyboard. They have someone playing the guitar and we didn't have our video set up," she said.
"We had music and that didn't work either."
Many of the members held back tears when they were chosen.
Each of them has made clothing donations in the past because of how much it has meant to them personally.
Taylor knows this money can help the 4Cs right away.
"I'm really happy we got it," she said, adding after talking to a volunteer it gave her even more reason to win. "They were kind of running low [on donations] and wanted to expand [the building], but it's expensive."
The group pointed out the usage this past month was by 267 families. They couldn't believe how much the food bank is needed in the community and wanted others to know too.
A four-member panel, comprising of HHSS teacher Paul Longo and last year's winning group members (Jessica Duchene, Brigitta Hicks and Ali Hicks), judged based on the content, impact and the overall presentation.
The judges took a few minutes and based their decision on the 4Cs' need.
Last year the winning group won the grant for the Minden Food Bank, which had never been presented before let alone picked as a winner.
All of the winners and a charity representative are invited to the May gala in Toronto on Thursday, May 24.
There were three other groups showcased at the Haliburton theatre that provided presentations with music, information, taped interviews and slide presentations. SIRCH had the duo of Roman Gardiner and Spencer Truman while Point in Time (with two groups) was represented first by Charlene Hicks, Tanisha Gordon, Shyanna Smith and Kathleen Tedford then in the second group by Hanna Reddering, Kat Coneybeare, Cassidy Havill and Jamie Pyl.
YPI is part of an umbrella of philanthropy programs funded by the Toskan Casale Foundation, which is a family foundation founded by the founders of M.A.C. Cosmetics (Julie Toskan-Casale, her husband Victor Casale and brother Frank Toskan) in 2001.
This is the fourth year the school has participated and there is no charge for participants who completed the presentations as part of civics education.
The YPI representative Sarah Howson was impressed by the presentations, referring to the finalists as the best she's seen among the four schools she has visited.
She thanked the teachers, students and, in particular, HHSS teacher Roland Zilla for his work and encouragement.
"It's inspiring to see how you've become advocates for social change by presenting on your selected charities. I believe the success of YPI will continue after this assembly ends."
With files from Echo archive