Even after finishing their week of sales, four students at Lake Bonavista Elementary School are still working away at making handmade jewelry in order to raise money for the Alberta Children’s Hospital.

“We sold a lot of stuff on the first and second day […] and we had a lot of requests. At the end of the week, we got like a thousand requests, we had a lot of people, we still have like 10 more to make – only for the people who didn’t get theirs already but have paid,” boasts Bodinya Fernando.

Fernando, Caris Gay, Kaylee Boys and Georgia Bright, all ages 9-10, were inspired to sell handmade jewelry during their school’s Pink Shirt Day —  an anti-bullying day where people wear pink, blue, or purple shirts to embody a stance against bullying.

“They wanted to do something for someone else,” Mark Gay, Caris’ dad says. “This was their idea of contributing; to sell these bracelets that they made themselves and the money would all go to help other kids at the Children’s Hospital.”

Cheque signing
The foursome writing out the sum of money they raised for donations. Photo by Rayane Sabbagh

They first had to get permission to sell during school hours. The excited girls explained the process while talking over each other. “We asked our principal Ms. Sherwood if we could sell them amongst the school, and she said, ‘Yeah just do a proposal,’ and we did and she said, ‘Yeah you can do it!’”

According to the girls, they sold jewelry for one week and a day, and each piece sold from 25 cents to a dollar, raising $89 in the end. The parents chipped in and doubled their amount and, with a little extra from school staff, the grand total was $347.

“We found out that the Alberta Children’s Hospital makes a big deal out of these things and wanted the kids to feel important,” Mark says.

The four girls were brought to the hospital on March 17, where they excitedly gave their donations in a gift box, and were presented with a blank cheque they could barely wait to fill out. They also received a sticker to write their school’s initials “LBS” that will eventually be placed on the donation wall.

The elementary students of Lake Bonavista signing their school initials to put up on the wall of donations at the Alberta Children’s Hospital.Photo By Rayane Sabbagh

“They do this to show how they contributed and what they call ‘kids helping kids,’” says Mark.

“It’s just a random act of kindness,” Caris explains. “It feels good because we’re not using the money for ourselves; we’re using it for kids that need more help than us.”

“We just really wanted to help sick kids, who couldn’t do things like this,” Bright chimed in.

“They’ve done a lot for us,” Fernando says with a soft smile. “They always help us out when we’ve been sick or had broken bones.”


Edited by Paul Rodgers, prodgers@cjournal.ca 

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