Seaquam students award $5,000 to Reach Society

NORTH DELTA – A charity that makes a difference in the lives of youth left a considerable impression on a group of young philanthropists who donated $5,000 to their cause.

A group of four Grade 12 students at Seaquam Secondary chose the Delta-based Reach Child Youth Development Society to receive this year’s grant from the Youth and Philanthropy Initiative (YPI).

Kiva Ford, Danielle Chies, Rasha Syed and Emma Douglas were the winning team among dozens of students participating in the program that sees high school students research and present on social issues and local charities in their community.

When the group began the project, the girls said they weren’t aware of many of the charities they were researching or what their goals were.

“After assessing our own lives, we decided to choose a charity that we found was overlooked,” the girls told the student body during an assembly March 3. “When we came across Reach, a charity that has helped over 1,000 autistic children and their families, we were immediately inspired by the depth of their programs and their philosophies.”

Seaquam students began the YPI program in January by researching social problems and creating engaging and persuasive presentations on a local charity they believe is most deserving of the $5,000 grant.

Students were given the chance to identify their personal values and then choose a social service charity which worked in an area where services are provided to disadvantaged individuals in areas such as poverty, homelessness, people with disabilities, abuse and other issues.

They then went on to qualify the charity against the project criteria (registered with Revenue Canada, social services, grass roots and local). Students then contacted their charity and did research via a site visit to determine how the charity would use the $5,000 award.

amacnair@thenownewspaper.com