Elmwood alums keep on fundraising
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This article was published 27/05/2020 (857 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
Members of the Elmwood High School Alumni Association aren’t letting a pandemic get in the way raising money for their alma mater’s legacy fund.
Committee member Linda Boughton said that, since the group’s inception 11 years ago, it has raised more than $300,000 to help students at Elmwood High through a combination of golf tournaments, reunions and other events. The funds are managed by the Winnipeg Foundation, so their impact will continue in the decades ahead.
Alumni recently received an email encouraging them to donate their old laptop computers, desktop computers or tablets to Computers for Schools, a non-profit organization that provides technology to people and groups in need, including students and programs at Elmwood High.
All donations will be tested, cleaned and refurbished prior to distribution, while those that cannot be used will be properly recycled.
“As a result of COVID-19, school closures and the move to online learning, many families across Manitoba are struggling to provide their children with the technology needed to maintain learning at home,” the association said in an email. “Schools are trying to assist those families by supplying computers and laptops where possible. Many of those schools turn to Computers for Schools.”
People can drop off their donations in a bin at the back of 18 Terracon Pl., which is located off Dugald Road, east of Lagimodiere Boulevard, between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Call 204-988-1790 to arrange for larger donations.
As the association and the legacy fund grow, more heartwarming stories of generosity emerge, Boughton said. One of their annual scholarships is named after Val Harder, a teacher who worked at Elmwood High School for 36 years.
“She was the Human Ecology teacher,” Boughton said. “She put on the plays and fashion show every year. Those kids were her kids.”
When word spread about the shortage of computers, Harder’s husband Ken decided to help in memory of his wife, who passed away shortly after her retirement.
“When he heard there was a need, he asked how much Chromebooks were,” Boughton said.
“When we told him the price, he said he’d donate 10.”
Funds raised provide bursaries to graduating students, Boughton said, and more receive assistance every year. After beginning with three scholarships 11 years ago, the group plans on awarding 11 scholarships to Elmwood’s 2020 graduation class.
“Between the 50th anniversary and the 60th last year, we raised more than $300,000,” Boughton said. “It grew out of nothing to something so powerful.”
The COVID-19 pandemic has forced the cancellation of the school’s graduation ceremonies this year.
“We were so sad because we look forward to the commencement, when we can present the awards,” Boughton said. “It’s the highlight of the year. You want to give them to everybody but you can’t.”
The committee has also cancelled its June annual general meeting and its July golf tournament. Golfers can still donate their registration fees to the cause, however.
“We’re collecting prizes and anyone who donates can win a prize,” Boughton said. “This year was going to be the best ever and it’s so disappointing we had to cancel it.”
East Kildonan community correspondent
Tony Zerucha is a community correspondent for East Kildonan. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org