Queen Elizabeth Secondary students hit $100,000-mark in donations to the Surrey Hospital Foundation, following the school’s most recent donation.
Five students from the north Surrey high school stopped by the hospital on Monday (June 17) to present a cheque for $14,594 to the hospital foundation through funds raised from the school’s annual Roots & Rhythms event.
In the past decade, according to the foundation, the school has contributed a total of $101,070 to support children’s services at Surrey Memorial Hospital.
Grade 12 student Zaeema Khan said it feels “wonderful” to be able to give back to the hospital foundation. She said she was proud of her classmates for fundraising a record amount this year, adding that the highest donation had previously been around $10,000.
Khan said she began helping out with the Roots & Rhythms event when she was in Grade 9.
“I helped out one year, near the end, and I really enjoyed it and it doesn’t feel like an option to not do it again,” she said.
Now that Khan is graduating, she said she would tell future students thinking of helping out that it’s “one of the biggest projects that our school does in terms of volunteering” and to “definitely take part in any way you can.”
“Even if you can’t help out with the fundraising aspect, but if you want to perform at the event or if you want to help find a donor for the event, who can donate some food or something, that would be wonderful too. Any way you can help, you should take that opportunity,” said Khan.
Graham Magnusson, Queen Elizabeth principal, said it’s gratifying to see the kids so happy of the work they’ve done.
“It’s so strongly student led. It really does mean something to the kids.”
Magnusson said part of that pride could be with being in such close proximity of Surrey Memorial Hospital, but also a “good percentage” of the students were born at the hospital.
“They feel that connection is a way that maybe other more distant causes don’t resonate with people,” he said.
Over the years the donations from the Roots & Rhythms event have supported child and youth services, including youth mental health initiatives. Now students are helping to raise money for the 20-year-old Children’s Health Centre, which “desperately” needs help, said hospital foundation president and CEO Jane Adams.
Adams said the “roots run deep in Surrey.”
Never worked in a community where the young people are as socially engaged as they are in Surrey. We’re very, very blessed that way.”