They ran, sang, shaved their heads, stood on street corners and barked for money and took part in dozens of other crazy stunts to raise funds for good causes this year. Students at all three Edmond high schools learned this year that giving back means long hours and lots of labor, but they found joy in return.
Edmond MemorialEdmond Memorial High School students smashed all fundraising records this year by raising more than $500,000 during the school’s annual Swine Week, benefiting The Jimmy Everest Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders in Children. The students and faculty collected $527,704 through a variety of Swine Week events. Memorial student council adviser Bill Terry credited the students’ hard work. "We did not get a check for more than $2,500,” he said during this year’s final assembly. "That was the biggest check we got. The rest of it was nickels and dimes and dollars here and there.” Memorial student council President Hannah Van Meter said students were motivated after meeting some of the children fighting cancer who are treated at the center. "It really hits your heart because they are so amazing. For a child to have the disease that they have, you just want to do everything you can to save them,” said Van Meter. Dr. William Meyer, the director of the Everest center, said the half-million dollar donation is going to improve the lives of all the children treated at the center.
Edmond Santa FeEdmond Santa Fe High School students raised $160,035 during Double Wolf Dare Week to support the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Oklahoma. "We talk about scores, both test scores and game scores, and we talk about being better people, I promise you that the best thing you can do with your time for the rest of your lives is to do something for someone else,” school Principal Jason Brown said during this year’s closing ceremony. "This world will be a better place if it acted more like the students of Santa Fe High School this week.” The students set out to raise $115,000 for the organization that grants wishes for children with life-threatening medical conditions. "They calculated with our totals last year that we could grant exactly 23 wishes and there are exactly 23 children in Edmond waiting to have their wish(es) granted,” Santa Fe senior class President Beth Juge said.
Edmond NorthEfforts to help the less fortunate left an indelible impression on students at Edmond North this school year. Students there raised almost $229,000 for Victory Junction Camp in North Carolina during their annual Bring A Light To Others campaign. The camp for special needs students was founded by race car driver Kyle Petty and his wife, Pattie, in memory of their son, Adam. The money North students raised will be used to help special needs students from Oklahoma travel to and attend programs at the camp. Jillian Vaught, a junior and member of the school’s student council, said working on behalf of the charity changed her for the better. "If I hadn’t been a part of (BALTO) I don’t think I’d have the study skills I have now or the compassion to give back to others,” she said. "Obviously some of that is from my parents, but seeing the impact is so much more valuable. I know that I will forever look back on BALTO and see the difference it made and strive to make that difference again.”