Enthusiastic community response to high school relief fundraiser for Japan inspires new ideas

JULIE BERTRAND/Independent reporter

Stettler residents heeded the call of the Wm. E Hay Composite High School students for the Japan relief fundraiser.

Just a few shy of 200 people showed up at the spaghetti dinner on April 20, which was held at the school cafeteria.

“It was awesome. It was incredible,” said Sarah Steinbach, science and biology instructor and senior volleyball coach at Wm. E. Hay Composite High School.

“The support that we got from the community, our staff, and the students that came, was pretty incredible.”

The students and the teachers raised $4,426.60 in total.

“All of the 67 donated silent auction items went,” said Steinbach.

There was something for everyone, from gift certificates to a Shane Doan signed jersey.

Some students also got creative, auctioning lawn mowing and labour done by them.

“The students did a great job. They were very involved in it,” said Trish Schwarzenberger, administrative assistant at Wm. E Hay Composite High School.

“They really took on some key roles.”

Steinbach and Schwarzenberger started planning the event a month beforehand and they were surprised how quickly it all came together.

They believe that the raised funds should be in the Canadian Red Cross’ hands by May 6.

“I think this event will make our community even stronger,” said Steinbach.

“Just the support of the community coming out, and their supporting our staff and students that put it on is incredible.”

The students are even considering holding fundraisers in the future for causes closer to home.

“We’ll probably need new volleyball nets next year, and the players were thinking about having a fundraiser for the nets,” concluded Steinbach.