Library - Howay Helping Hands
Something fishy happened at FW Howay! How did Socktober end with a Kiss?
The goal for “Socktober” was to gather 600 pairs of socks. The reward was to help homeless neighbours in New West stay warm by donating socks to the Lookout Society. The fun was to take up Principal Jamie Sadler’s challenge: If F.W. Howay kids could surpass the 600-pair-of-socks goal, Mr. Sadler would KISS A FISH.
With nearly 826 pairs collected, Mr. Sadler’s fate was sealed. On Tuesday, October 31, in front of a jam-packed gymnasium, the deed was done. And here’s the proof, thanks to school witnesses –
Principal Sadler meets Phyllis the Fish:
Principal Sadler plants the kiss:
Principal Sadler reaches a verdict:
“Phyllis the Fish was the most foul smelling, ugliest and revolting fish I have ever encountered!” concluded Mr. Sadler. “Even with all the Halloween candy in possession, NOBODY was able to spare me a breath mint!”
But that’s not all! Because the helping hands at F.W. Howay were so enthusiastic, students came close to their super-goal of a thousand pairs of new socks for donation to the Lookout Society. Sighed Mr. Sadler: “So I also agreed to have my hair streaked to recognize Howay students’ efforts.”
On Oct.31, his hair was ‘traumatized with a shock of gold” to mark the sock collection feat for feet. By Nov. 1, Sadler noted with evident relief that his hair was back to its more natural state.
Howay helping hands: Social responsibility in action…
Anna, Isla, Andre and Kai are Grade 5 members of F.W. Howay’s Student Council who have been helping lead the Socktober campaign.
Isla explained that every year, F.W. Howay kids do a winter clothing drive for the homeless. But this year, the goal was to collect socks for the Lookout Society, which serves New Westminster and other communities in Metro Vancouver.
The focus on feet, as fellow student council member Anna noted, is because “socks are the last warm item of clothing that people donate.”
“And feet are also the part of the body that get the coldest,” added Kai. All four students are helping to deliver the socks to the society.
Teacher-librarian Janet Dupuis notes that students at F.W. Howay have learned that everyone who is homeless has a story and that many people can end up going through rough patches.
“No one chooses to be homeless. The kids realize that a person may lose a job, a spouse or a child; they may be in a car accident, go on medication and be unable to work. Some just have bad luck.”
She said that kids in the city understand that neighbours in New West who are homeless are part of our lives – and that helping can make a difference. During the winter months, the Lookout Society cares for and serves more than 2,500 people each day at its shelters, housing and support programs. In New Westminster, for instance, the Rhoda Kaellis residents has 24 apartments for those with a history of homelessness, mental health issues, and substance abuse.