Students of Outreach High School in St Albert kicked off their 2nd NWT Christmas Kindness project in October. In 2022, the students befriended schools and communities in the NWT, making their holidays a bit brighter by gifting them a Christmas box.
JoAnn Blachford is the Outreach High‘s principal. She is one of the best kept secrets in public education, except to her students. Her school spirit, community engagement, and tireless work ethic placed her in the perfect position to catch Geoff McKay’s enthusiasm for the north.
The idea of sending boxes to NWT was inspired by Geoff, a family friend and an RCMP officer in St Albert. It started with one box sent to him by his wife Shelene while he was in isolation in Nunavut, NWT in 2021. The joy he felt over a box of kindness and his social media suggestion that kids could have a better Christmas with similar kindness resulted in hundreds of boxes filled with happiness delivered that Christmas to the NWT. Read about Delivering Happiness in Nunavut
Cole Garrity is a 16-year-old student at Outreach High School. Two years ago he hadn’t heard of Tuktoyaktuk. Now he can’t get the place off his mind. Cole organized a 2022 gift box drive after hearing about Geoff’s initiative. The fundraiser was part of a credit Garrity received to graduate, but it’s also reflective how much he cares. His principal and Geoff know it’s a really feel-good story. This November, Cole is heading to the NWT with JoAnn to meet Geoff and help deliver the boxes.
The ”T8N 100” men and St Albert Rotary Club made generous donations to fill boxes. Acera Insurance employees unpacked and sorted the boxes. Buffalo Airways will get the parcels to the North for free. Other partners have stepped up to ensure the timely arrival of the boxes.
It’s not too late to come by Outreach and grab a box and fill it up with toys, clothing, food, candy etc. Label the box and bring it back to them on or before November 3rd. If you have any questions please call them at 780.458.0839 or email to firstname.lastname@example.org
Outreach High is located at 60 Sir Winston Churchill Avenue, St. Albert.
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