Giving back adds to Dakota experience


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This article was published 04/01/2022 (511 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

It’s often said that it is better to give than to receive. Mackenzie Dudeck, a new 14-year-old student at Dakota Collegiate and Royalwood resident had such an experience leading up to the holiday season.

Dudeck took part in Dakota Collegiate’s HamperTime, a program that has been running since 2005 to assist Dakota Collegiate families.

She contributed to filling 38 hampers full of food and presents and collecting more than $8,500. More than 4,000 non-perishable food items were donated, and funds were used to purchase gifts for 56 children aged 12 and under, plus 70 teenagers.

Supplied photo Mackenzie Dudeck, a 14-year-old Dakota Collegiate student, enjoyed taking part in the school’s HamperTime program.

“I knew what hampers were but I have never participated in a fundraiser this large before. It made me feel good about helping out other families in need,” Dudeck said.

She was inspired to join the committee through her class’ educational assistant and a friend.
The holiday season is a special time for Dudeck to spend time with her family, especially people she hasn’t seen in a long time due to the pandemic.

“I love the anticipation and excitement of the build up to Christmas too,” Dudeck added.

Dudeck said she enjoys living in Royalwood.

“The community and people living in my area mean so much to me,” she said.

“I like the location and all the nature trails and shopping around me. I like seeing all the animals like deer, fox, turtles, and owls at any point through the day.  It’s like our own little hidden gem.”  

When asked about her message to other teens in terms of giving back, Dudeck was encouraging.

“They should participate because it helps out families but it’s also a lot of fun. At Dakota Collegiate, we played games, had competitions, and danced to make the whole event more fun. Before HamperTime I didn’t know many people at Dakota but being a part of this committee helped me meet students and brought me closer to the students in my own class.”

Dudeck enjoys the extracurricular activities at Dakota. So far, she has joined the volleyball team, HamperTime committee and also takes part in mental health awareness and musical theatre. She wants to get involved with more sports teams and possibly more clubs.

“I was still really new to the school, and didn’t really know anyone, and seeing everyone all come together as a school community made me feel like part of the family,” she said.

Tanya Misseghers is a community correspondent for Royalwood.

Tanya Misseghers

Tanya Misseghers
Royalwood community correspondent

Tanya Misseghers is a community correspondent for Royalwood.

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