Monday, September 26, 2011

stepping up

Carrie Gelson of Seymour Elementary, Vancouver, BC
(photo: Mark van Manen/PNG) Story by Janet Steffenhagen, Vancouver Sun
while getting my two smaller kids to their school today, i heard a story on CBC radio about an elementary school teacher who has written an open letter to the people of vancouver. grab some tissue and go read it, i'll wait.

when i moved to vancouver i was a single mom and it took my entire wages just to pay the rent but i had some savings and eventually i was able to find a job with an adequate salary and medical benefits. i had family and friends and a great daycare to help me with my son and still things could be very challenging. i try to imagine what it would be like not to have a job, a warm and safe home, weather appropriate clothing, and healthy food and it makes my heart ache. how would it feel to be a child and not have enough to eat or proper clothing? in vancouver? in canada?

when i got home my oldest son and i gathered up all the extra boots, mittens, gloves, and hats we had around the house. we packed them up and went to the nearest dollar store to buy more gloves and new socks and delivered it all to seymour elementary school.

i'm sure that there are many schools in vancouver and indeed, in any other city, which could use help to make sure that kids are fed and properly clothed. my family is going to do what we can. we are going to step up.


  1. thanks for that, kate. i know what i'll be doing next week.

  2. Kate

    Wow. Someone sent this to me. Thank you for getting it. Thank you for your generous donation. But most of all, thank you for speaking up for families who do their very best to look after their children and may need a little help.

    This means a lot to me.


  3. Admiral Seymour school has been entered to win a $98,000.00 grant to pay for some additional services for its students in the upcoming years.

    It would really be appreciated if you were able to help them win this funding. All you have to do it go online and register so you can vote. They ask that you VOTE DAILY from now until October 19th.

    Thank you, in advance, for voting every day and passing the message on!

  4. Admiral Seymour’s (Carrie Gelson’s school) Entry in the Aviva Community Fund has made it to the semi finals. In order for them to make it to the final round their entry needs the most number of votes. Voting for the semi final round begins on December 5th and runs until December 16th. Votes can and should be made daily.

    Please help the students at Admiral Seymour to win $98,000 for much needed art therapy. Details about their entry can be found at:

    A short video clip can be seen at:

    Please help by casting your votes beginning December 5th. Thank you.