There are several initiatives underway in schools where Burnaby students are using Valentine’s Day to show their love of community by helping people who need it the most.
At Burnaby South Secondary School, 40 students have been working for weeks on handmade cards for homeless people. The idea for the Heart to Heart Valentine’s Day campaign came from students in a club called South We Council, which is focused on helping others and leading change.
The nearly 250 cards the Grade 8 to 12 students in the club created are filled with messages of hope.
“Homelessness in our community has increased since the pandemic, and many of us wanted to help,” said Grade 10 student Isabella Lin, one of the organizers. “We organized this event to make a change in our community and to let the people who are homeless know that they are not alone.”
The completed cards have been picked up and will be distributed by the Society to End Homelessness in Burnaby.
Students at Burnaby Central Secondary initiated The Care Project to raise money for BC Children’s Hospital. Shreya Kamboj is one of the project co-creators.
“It is difficult to see what others go through,” said Kamboj. “The Care Project would like to bring back the sparks of happiness children have experienced during happier times in their lives, and what better group to support than children.”
Fellow Grade 11 student Riya Kainth is the other co-creator: “We want the children in hospital to know they are not alone. We want to give back by providing a positive impact to them and to the hospital community.”
With delivery on February 14, their care bear sale of teddy bears and chocolate also builds school community by encouraging people to purchase the packages for peers or school staff as a token of gratitude, or for one’s self as an act of self-love.
They and the other ten students on the committee were able to sell out the 120 packages that they created, raising $623 for BC Children’s Hospital.
Younger students are also doing their part to make a difference.
At Brentwood Park Elementary School, students in Grades 2 and 3 created cards for seniors. Three classes made approximately 60 cards that will be distributed on Valentine’s Day to people in long-term care homes and seniors living alone at home. The students wanted to share good wishes and show each person that they are thought of and are special.