© Jonathan Riley
Kathy Thompson of the DRHS cafeteria helps Zach Robinson and Jeimie Robicheau of the SchoolsPlus student advisory committee as they prepare for a pancake breakfast fundraiser on Saturday, April 26.
People like pancakes.
That’s the idea behind a fundraiser at Digby Regional High School—the student advisory committee for the SchoolsPlus program in Digby County is holding a pancake breakfast fundraiser on Saturday, April 26.
The proceeds from the fundraiser will go the student emergency fund for students at all schools in Digby County.
The student emergency fund helps families and students who don’t have the money or coverage for things like prescriptions, dental care, eye examinations, gas money for appointments in Yarmouth or at the IWK Hospital in Halifax.
“A big part of the SchoolsPlus program is to fill in all those little gaps,” says Amy Theriault, a SchoolsPlus facilitator.
For example last year they helped more than 20 students in Digby County get eyeglasses.
Theriault and Carmelita Johnson, a SchoolsPlus community outreach worker, have asked teachers and principals to refer any students who might need some help.
For example, if a teacher noticed a student having trouble seeing the board, then SchoolsPlus could arrange an eye appointment.
“If you’re a student who can’t see the board, or you have a toothache, that is definitely going to affect your ability to learn,” said Theriault.
Theriault remembers one student who was having trouble seeing in class and they were able to get glasses for him.
“He then could be more productive with his school work,” she said. “In addition, he said that without his glasses, he wouldn’t have been able to write his driver’s test, which was very important for him because he wanted to look for employment and gain some independence.”
In other cases, they provided gas cards for parents who had to drive their children long distances to medical appointments, or paid for medication that some students needed to be able to focus in school.
The student emergency fund has received some funding from the community health board, plus donations from the Scotiabank and from concerned community members, but those funds have run out already for this year.
Theriault and Johnson hope the pancake breakfast will raise some money for the program, but also raise community awareness about the emergency fund—so people know the help is there if they need it; and so other people are aware of a way they can help.
The breakfast runs from 8 a.m. to 11 and costs $9 for adults and $4.50 for kids.