“Oh the places you will go! There is fun to be done! There are points to be scored. There are games to be won. And the magical things that you can do with that ball will make you the winning-est winner of all.”
And we are off….. As our current students begin to embark on this incredible journey, we reflect on the achievement of a previous student.
While Project Give Back is a year -long project for some, for others it may become the starting point for a lifelong journey of giving back. The program is introduced in most schools during grade 4, in others at grade 5. It is at this age, where students begin to truly understand their own potential and the impact they can have on others. Yet when all is said and done and the program runs its course, there are some who require more. They are not satisfied with ending their project as such, and wish to take it that one step further.
Sydney Schacter is one of those students. Sydney’s involvement with her charity, the Dr I.B. Schacter Neurological Fund, preceded her presentation and will continue to follow for many years to come.
You see, Dr Irving Schacter is Syd’s grandfather, and she and her family have chosen to honor his life’s work and passion by collecting funds for the Toronto General Western Hospital.
How do the Schacters collect these funds? They do so by sharing their passion with others. Sydney and her family love celebrating Halloween. Like many families, each year they enjoy decorating a spooky home. But this is not your typical Halloween decor, this house is epic! Their home and yard are turned into a virtual zombie apocalypse. Once Syd and her family realized the crowds and attention that their house was drawing, they began to use this publicity for a better purpose and seek donations from onlookers. The family generously offers to match all combined donations, raising even more money for the charity in a fun and effective manner.
But it wasn’t until undertaking Project Give Back last year, that Sydney sought to find out more about this charity and how the money helps others. As part of her presentation, she interviewed her grandfather, who came as a guest speaker. While a few neighboring classmates were somewhat familiar with the charity, Syd’s presentation gave her peers a better understanding about the fund and how it helps others. It also gave Sydney a reason to take this project beyond the walls of her classroom.
Sydney says she will continue to honor this Halloween tradition as long as possible, as she loves to do so. She enjoys watching the impact it has made upon her, family, friends and community. Like Project Give Back, it is just another way of spreading kindness and making this world a little better, one spooky house at a time!