A trio of students at Chippewa Secondary School want to raise money to provide care packages to the area’s homeless population.
The Together Initiative is an online fundraiser with proceeds going towards the purchase of COVID-19 supplies (hand sanitizer, face masks), feminine hygiene products, and winter clothing. The items will be assembled in a package which will be distributed by The Gathering Place.
Lucas Porto, the Founder of the Together Initiative, recently relocated to King street near The Gathering Place.
“I see what’s going on with people and how hard the COVID-19 lockdown is on the vulnerable population,” he explained.
When he began Grade 12 in September at Chippewa Secondary, his guidance counselor pushed him in the right direction to begin the Together Initiative.
Co-founders Adeolu Agboola and Lisa Zhao joined Porto later on in the year after previously having volunteer experiences with The Gathering Place.
“I was interested because I thought it would be a great way to give back to the community in a time of need,” Zhao said.
“Hearing of all the stories of people, I thought it was really tough. I’ve found that through what’s happened, we’ve gotten to see the kindness of others really shine through,” Agboola added.
The three Grade 12 students will now be purchasing items for the care package using money donated online. They currently have a goal of $2,500.
Donations will be accepted until mid-December, at which point the three will purchase the items for the care packages. One care package costs between $10 to $15.
Porto and Agboola eventually want to pursue postsecondary education in hopes of going to medical school, while Zhao has her sights set on studying computer science.
While they also look ahead to the future, the three high school seniors say they want to make a difference in the present.
“Making a change in someone’s life is such an incredible thing to do,” Agboola said.
“I personally have been very fortunate to have a place to say, and have transportation during the pandemic but not everyone has. Just by giving these care packages, hopefully we can help by a bit,” Zhao commented.
“It makes me happy that we’re coming together and helping give back,” Porto added.
To donate to the Together Initiative, click here.