Grade 7 students from Gibson Elementary in North Delta led a coin drive at the school to raise money for Summits of Hope

North Delta students send support up Kilimanjaro

Kids at Gibson Elementary raise money for Summits of Hope, inspired by climber Don O'Toole.

  • Oct. 13, 2012 7:00 p.m.

When Don O’Toole climbs Mount Kilimanjaro this week in support of BC Children’s Hospital he will be taking a piece of Gibson Elementary School with him.

Earlier this month, the North Delta school supported O’Toole and his Summits of Hope climbing team by organizing a coin collection fundraiser. The Grade7 students led the initiative as a commitment to the school’s goal of being a caring and giving community.

Every class from kindergarten to Grade 7 got involved and in the end a total of $1,680 was raised.

To honour the efforts of the kids, O’Toole recently visited the school. He spent time with every class, answering their questions and welcoming their words of ‘good luck’. He also collected flags that had been decorated by each class and strung them on a long rope. This rope of flags will be making the mountain climb with O’Toole. He will be taking the flags with him to the top, and the students will be able to follow his progress the entire way.

Throughout his eight-day climb (six days up and two days down), O’Toole and his team will be recording daily voice updates. These updates will be posted at where the students and the community can follow them. Their climb started on Wednesday, Oct. 10.

Summits of Hope is a registered non-profit that has been supporting children since 1999. According to their website, “We climb mountains for children who can not. As we climb, we honour lives lost, celebrate survivors, and support some of the best care and research in the world, at BC Children’s Hospital.”

“This initiative is a great fit for our school, because it is a way for our kids to help other kids. Just as our students support the Terry Fox Foundation and Free the Children, Summits of Hope is another way for them to proactively give back,” said Warren Zerbe, principal at Gibson Elementary.

Once the Summits of Hope team has completed the climb and returned to Canada, O’Toole will visit Gibson Elementary School once again to share the stories of his adventure.

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