Support for the Terry Fox Foundation and for Fox’s efforts to raise awareness on cancer issues was big in Ponoka Sept. 19 with two Ponoka schools investing a major effort into a morning run.
St. Augustine Catholic School held its run following a pre-determined course around the school grounds.
Organizer Mary Ann Baden, a Grade 4 teacher, says they have supported the Terry Fox Run initiative for the last 11 years. She feels students enjoy taking ownership of the fundraising program.
“We’re going to have the pledges come in till the end of the month…because we do have some students that are sponsored per lap,” explained Baden.
All the students, staff and even the parent council came out to support the event. Baden says, every year, students get excited for the run and take pride in what they are doing. Indeed, while being interviewed by Ponoka News, many of her Grade 4 students came up to Baden to ensure she was checking off how many laps they had run.
“They really feel that together they can make a difference,” stated Baden.
Last year, St. Augustine students raised $5,000 for the Terry Fox Foundation. Baden said they didn’t want to set any specific goals to keep the kids’ focus on supporting a positive cause. She feels the fact that the foundation’s administration fees are small — 15 per cent — compared to other organizations is a positive thing.
“It’s the best day of the year. They (students) are also very enthusiastic,” she explained.
The run concluded with a hot dog barbecue lunch hosted by the parent council.
PSC celebrates Fox’s accomplishments
For many years, students at Ponoka Secondary Campus have taken the time to commemorate Terry Fox’s accomplishments with a run and barbecue.
Assistant-principal Kathy McTaggart says she enjoys seeing strong support from the entire school team.
“I think the fact that every single person is doing it is the most important factor,” said McTaggart. “And then we’re just supporting the idea of Terry Fox, which is hugely important to all Canadians.”
Students had the option to run or walk in two courses, a three-kilometre or five-kilometre loop. She was eager to run as she had a friendly competition with students.
“The whole week before, the bets are on between teachers and students,” McTaggart joked.
“A lot of kids strive for that five-kilometres and they work hard,” she concluded.
The Terry Fox run at Crestomere School is on Wednesday, Sept. 24. Mecca Glen School and Ponoka Elementary School will have their runs on Thursday, Sept. 25.