Tricia McAuley (far right) stands with her former students and a pair of cheques that will be delivered to the Salvation Army and the North Island Wildlife Recovery Centre. (ELENA RARDON / ALBERNI VALLEY NEWS)

Tricia McAuley (far right) stands with her former students and a pair of cheques that will be delivered to the Salvation Army and the North Island Wildlife Recovery Centre. (ELENA RARDON / ALBERNI VALLEY NEWS)

Students at an Alberni school raise funds through craft fair

EJ Dunn classmates originally held fundraiser for wildfire relief in Australia

An elementary school class in Port Alberni has raised some money for two local charities.

In early 2020, when wildfires were ravaging Australia, EJ Dunn Elementary School teacher Tricia McAuley said her Grade 2 class started talking about holding a fundraiser to raise funds for a wildlife rescue in Australia.

READ MORE: Port Alberni café, pair of teens rally support for Australia bush fire relief

“They were concerned and worried, especially about the animals,” said McAuley. “I saw that as a bit of a teachable moment.”

With McAuley’s help, the students organized a craft fair where they sold handmade crafts—including jewelry, magnets and slime—at the school. The craft fair raised more than $400.

However, the COVID-19 pandemic put McAuley’s plans to donate the money on hold.

“COVID-19 kind of kiboshed everything,” said McAuley. “So the money was just sitting in an account.”

More than a year later, McAuley met up with her former students and had a brainstorming session to decide where the money would go. The students chose to split the funds between the local Port Alberni Salvation Army and the North Island Wildlife Recovery Centre in Errington.

“This is what we voted on,” said McAuley. “I wanted [the students] to have input since they raised the money.”



elena.rardon@albernivalleynews.com

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School District 70