Grade 12s give more than a toss this Friday for African students

June 12, 2013   ·   0 Comments

By Brock Weir

As Grade 12 students cram this week ahead of sitting down to their final exams, some might be eagerly anticipating their future, but also wondering about the legacy they leave behind.

For many students graduating Aurora High School this year, however, they will leave behind a legacy that goes far beyond their schools, and indeed their own borders – helping to support and better the education system in Ghana one village at a time.

If you had your car scrubbed and polished by an eager group of students last week, you may have done your bit to contribute to this legacy. If you headed over to Mucho Burrito at Bayview and Welliington on Saturday to grab a quick and spicy bite, you too may have helped them along your way.

As the students fan out across Aurora to raise funds for the Dekpor School Development Organization (DSDO) this month, you will have one final chance to take part in the efforts – and have some fun in the process – by testing your arm in the Ultimate Frisbee tournament.

Friday’s game is being organized by Kaitlin Kirali, Heather Tillsley, and Kelly Baskin. Forming one of the three groups doing their bit for their Ghanan counterparts, they were inspired by a talk given at their school by Aurora’s Carol Sheardown, who joined the DSDO in 2009.

Founded to focus on one specific village, Dekpor, the group provides support not only for students and their teachers, but the entire community through providing school supplies, building, repairing, and rebuilding school structures, and making sure there are enough teachers to go around.

“A huge thing is school supplies,” explains Heather. “There is a primary class of 150 kids and they have just one teacher. School supplies are hard to come by and what we’re trying to do is send money over there to get them supplies. Another initiative is building water reservoirs, which can basically serve the whole community. They have one or two built right now and they are working on a third. Some others are just improving the school environment and desks, and making the building better and easier to use.”

From Ms. Sheardown’s initial presentation, the girls have been working on the tournament for nearly two months, brainstorming ideas on how to engage the community, the goals and objectives they should have, and going out into the community to look for donations for raffle items – and to keep everyone refreshed as they get familiar very quickly with their Frisbee.

“It’s one of the most competitive but nicest games you can play,” says Kaitlin. “It gets pretty competitive during the game, but after a game of Frisbee you all come together and cheer for each other and encourage each other. It has got a pretty competitive spirit, but it is so fun at the same time. It’s such a family sport and anyone can play.”

Adds Kelly: “We’re looking for anyone! A parent team would be hilarious to have, and kids of all ages can come. Don’t worry, you don’t have to know how to play Frisbee. It’s just for fun and you’ll learn pretty quickly.”

It is $4 to enter the tournament and organizers are hoping to ultimately end with at least eight teams with eight members apiece.

“Just come and support it,” encourages Kaitlin. “It’s going to be a fun, easy-going event. It’s three hours and you get to help so many. $4 may seem like nothing, but it helps them a lot.”

For more information on the event, contact Aurora High School at 905-727-3107.



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