May 18, 2017
Courage, compassion and humility will be in the spotlight next Wednesday (7:45 p.m.) at the Fairmont Winnipeg as the 20th annual MTS Young Humanitarian Awards show highlights 13 public school students from seven school divisions in Winnipeg, Gimli, Bird’s Hill and Moosehorn.
“We can’t say enough about these compassionate students and the teachers and parents who mentor them,” says Norm Gould, President of The Manitoba Teachers’ Society. “These kids have beautiful humanitarian hearts and they represent the good in public school students all across Manitoba.”
Compassion comes naturally to Faith Nickel, a Grade 8 student from Alf Cuthbert School in Moosehorn, Manitoba. Faith organized a sock drive for Siloam Mission which netted 450 pairs of socks for the homeless. She helped with a class blanket and winter clothing drive which gathered 174 blanket and 297 pieces of clothing. She’s such an inspirational leader to her classmates, whether it’s helping individual homeless people or collecting toiletries for Syrian refugees. She’s always the first person to help any student who is down, and is extremely sensitive to students with special needs.
Cameron Lozinski, a Grade 12 student from Gimli High School, has a deep belief in diversity and a flair for organizing. In Grade 9, he was the only male student on the International Day of the Girl committee. He has a long-standing passion for Indigenous issues, history and culture. After studying the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s report he planned the school’s “Red Dress Project”. A self-starter, Cam is learning Cree and has accepted the invitation to teach basic Cree to a group of middle-school students. He’s raised his own funds for three international Habitat build trips to El Salvador, Indonesia and Portugal. Cam also uses his knitting skills to create and sell toques to raise funds for the homeless.
You won’t find four more enthusiastic Grade 5 humanitarians than Mackenzie Anderson, Livia Delarosa, Rhyann Miller, Isabella Nazarewich, Katie Posthumus, Kate Tustin, Carter Wiebe of Bird’s Hill School’s Dog House Canteen. Last year, these seven girls approached the school principal with the idea of re-opening the school canteen to send the proceeds to relief efforts in Fort McMurray. With one month of work these students raised $1,200 to donate to the Canadian Red Cross. They have run the canteen every second month forwarding an entire month’s proceeds to each of Ronald McDonald House, the Christmas Cheer Board, and the Children’s Hospital of Winnipeg.
We’re proud to honour Loizza Aquino, Institut collégial Vincent Massey Collegiate; Charles Apolinario, West Kildonan Collegiate; Jayda Hope, River East Collegiate; and Arjay Certeza, Collège Garden City Collegiate. Their work founding Peace of Mind 204 has been a godsend to teens who suffer from mental health issues. They are on the ground floor connecting and helping. In fact, their Youth Against Mental Illness Stigma (YAMIS) events gather hundreds of students from across Manitoba to speak about their experiences with mental health. That day, dozens of students find the courage to speak openly about suicide attempts, self harm and sexuality during the open mic session. Peace of Mind 204 has saved lives is helping to erase the stigma that prevents many youth from getting help. It has now become a registered charity.