Students from three Catholic schools embraced a campaign in early March to raise funds for the local chapter of the Kidney Foundation.
Led by Our Lady of Lourdes French teacher Christina Kenny, students at Our Lady of Lourdes, Holy Cross and Holy Family Catholic schools held Kidney Candy Gram Campaigns. In just five days almost $800 was raised.
“Kidney disease has affected not only me but several members of my family. My mother, grandmother and many aunts and uncles all received kidney transplants. Sitting on the Renal Patient and Family Advisory Council (PFAC) at the Sault Area Hospital and being a teacher, I know that education is power and really wanted to bring the Kidney Foundation into our school system,” said Kenny.
The response was enthusiastic when Kenny brought up her proposal to her students and her colleagues Rose Giuliano and Stella Savino to participate.
“It was wonderful to see how our students were collaborative contributors who demonstrated respect and contributed to the common good. Our students are aware and compassionate towards the struggles that many people face each day and this fundraiser was a great way for our staff and students to demonstrate the importance of being charitable and responsible citizens,” added Kenny.
On hand to receive the funds that were raised by the three schools was Tannis McMillan from the local Kidney Foundation, kidney transplant recipient Marci Oliverio and Charles-Anne Wardlaw, a nurse in the Renal Department at Sault Area Hospital.
“I think that it’s really good to get students involved because they’re bringing the information home. In this instance you can see the direct connection that the students have with Mme. Kenny as she has a real connection to kidney disease,” said McMillan.
Prior to the campaign, students learned about kidney disease and how dialysis and eventually transplants give many Canadians a new lease on life. They also found out that several families within the school board are affected by kidney disease.
“My experience with the Kidney Candy Gram Campaign was very eye opening and I learned how important it is to raise money for great causes. I enjoyed spending my time helping Mme. Kenny raise money for the Kidney Foundation. The foundation helps a lot people who are struggling with kidney disease and I am proud I was a part of it, said Lily Fasulo.
“I was very grateful to be a part of this great cause that supported the Kidney Foundation and those struggling with kidney disease. We will also be doing a clothing drive at Our Lady of Lourdes School for Kidney Clothes. I am eager to give my time to help support Kidney Clothes and the Kidney Foundation, said Troy Rossetto.
Kenney says the initial campaign was a big success and she hopes to expand it to other schools next year.