By Jasmine Franklin
A school shooting tragedy left has encouraged the father of one victim to rise above the morbid reality and create a positive experience that will come to Ponoka.
Experience the power of Rachel’s Challenge
After spending her life spreading happiness and positivity, her father, Darrell, began Rachel’s Challenge, now an international campaign, to continue spreading her message.
“It’s a powerful story with a message that’s timeless for all ages,” said Karie Ackerman, executive director of Ponoka’s Victim Services. “It shows that a positive thing can come out of such a tragedy and the family shows Rachel’s death wasn’t in vain.”
In 2009, nearly 3,500 presentations were made internationally reaching out to audiences of more than 1.3 million people. So far in 2010, about 500 presentations have been given with 176,812 audience members.
One month before Scott’s death, she wrote an essay titled, “My Ethics, My Codes Of Life,” laying out her principles of life and how easy and important it is to help others.
According to the Rachel’s Challenge website, in her essay she wrote, “I have this theory that if one person can go out of their way to show compassion, then it will start a chain reaction of the same.”
Challenges given through the presentation include choosing the right role models and doing something everyday to show someone you love them.
“The presentations’ message is really about informing people they can change the whole outcome of an environment by doing random acts of kindness,” Ackerman said.
Scott’s family members do give presentations, however, Ponoka’s presentation will not be given to by a relative but someone trained in the process.
Rachel’s Challenge in Ponoka is sponsored by Ponoka Family and Community Support Services, Ponoka Victim Services, Ponoka Tri-Services and Ponoka Composite High School.
A presentation for students only will take place from 10 to 11 a.m. and another will commence with an invitation to parents from 7 to 8 p.m. The presentation lasts for one hour and is followed by a 45-minute interactive training session where both adults and students will learn the “how to” and ensure the positive impact will continue.
The event is free and will take place in the PCHS gymnasium.