Online first – WE Kids at St. Stephen High School heading to Montreal

Submitted photo Students at St. Stephen High School who are involved in the WE Kids program recently found out that they will be traveling to Montreal to take part in WE Day on Monday, February 1. This is an all-expenses paid trip that the students have earned through their work in the community, from raising donations for the food bank to reading to kids to visiting seniors’ homes and more. Back row, from left to right: Matalyn Gagne, Sadie Moffatt, Kallie Calder, Ginny Wilson, Kelsey Bedford, Charlotte Caswell. Front: Michaela Hare, Kylie Johnson, Caylee Hannan and Emily Hull.

St. Stephen – Members of the WE Kids program at St. Stephen High School recently found out they have been chosen to take part in WE Day in Montreal, which takes place on Monday, February 3. Not only were the students chosen for the special event, they have also been given an all-expenses paid trip from the We Kids and WestJet Cares for Kids programs. Needless to say, when they discovered that they would be going on this trip, the students were very excited.

WE Schools is a series of programs in more than 18,000 schools across North America and the UK that give students a chance to do service learning. They offer tools and resources that help teachers give their students the skills they need to become conscientious global citizens who care about their communities and the world around them. WE Day is part of the WE movement, and it is a celebration of kids and teachers who want to make a difference. This event features world-renowned speakers, performers, and others who will inspire the students to go out and do even more for others.

Guidance Counselor Tricia Calder said the group will be able to attend WE Day Montreal, and that they have been informed they will be receiving VIP treatment. This is a reward for all of their hard work in the community, recognizing the initiatives they have been involved with over the past few months.

“They have been recognized, and were given this amazing opportunity,” said Calder.

Calder said the students in the WE Kids program have been involved in numerous activities in and around St. Stephen, including helping to raise money and food donations for the local food bank. She said they have done random acts of kindness throughout the community, and they have also done WE Rise Above presentations at the elementary schools to promote awareness and kindness. They also took part in the SPCA pumpkin decorating campaign, and they will soon begin raising funds to help bring fresh water to people in Kenya.

“We’ll be doing the fundraiser, We Walk for Water. We get the elementary schools involved as well. In past years, they’ve raised money for goats for families in Kenya. They promote literacy by reading to children,” said Calder.

St. Stephen High School students started participating in the WE School program about four years ago. This is a service learning program for students. It helps them to become more aware of community issues, as well as global issues, and they get to use their leadership skills to plan activities that will help to promote awareness of various issues.

The WE program will be covering all expenses for the students, including accommodations, while WestJet is covering the costs of the flights for the students. The students were informed about this opportunity last week, in a fun way. They were sent on a scavenger hunt through the school and had to find five envelopes. Inside each envelope were letters that the students had to unscramble to find out what the surprise would be. The letters spelled out, “WE are going on a trip”. Then, Calder informed the students where they would be going.

While in Montreal, the students will be staying at the Centre Sheraton Montreal Hotel. They will visit the Chalet du Mont-Royal and Place Jacques Cartier. There will be a pizza supper, and a leadership workshop with WE Coordinator Svens Telemaque. All of these activities will be taking place on Sunday, February 2. Then, the students will take part in WE Day on Monday.

“We’ve been told that they will be experiencing VIP treatment at WE Day,” said Calder. “It’s very exciting. We will leave on Saturday to catch our flight early Sunday morning. That day they are having activities for us. We’ll be staying the night in Montreal, and then attending WE Day the next day, and flying home that evening.”