Trojan spirit was in full swing at West Ferris Secondary School (WFSS) after a week-long fundraising campaign for a four-year-old girl recovering from brain surgery.
Last week, students had a discussion about the situation, and asked administration how they could help. Quickly, staff and students came together to rally behind Ali and her family.
Donations were collected all week, and a virtual “Rally for Ali” was held on Thursday. The week’s fundraising goal was $1,500. Principal Andy Gagne – who is well known for only wearing black, said if the students reached their goal, he would direct the morning traffic wearing pink (Ali’s favourite colour) and continue wearing the colour for the rest of the school day. He was held to that promise on October 30, after the WFSS community almost doubled their fundraising goal.
Social Sciences Teacher Mark Robertson, a key staff planner behind the fundraiser, recognized the ability of the WFSS community to work collectively to make a difference. “It’s an overwhelming amount of support from the students,” said Robertson. “It really blew everyone away that we exceeded the goal.”
Robertson added that when students heard that they had exceeded the goal, they were excited and emotional.
Gagne expressed his gratitude to those involved in the initiative; “I am so proud of our students and staff for supporting this little girl and her family. The West Ferris community, the families that support our school, they just continue to demonstrate what it means to belong to this school. Trojan Pride!” he said.
WFSS remains committed to supporting the local community. Students support food drives, collecting items for the women’s shelters, the annual cancer walk, and other fundraising opportunities throughout the school year.