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Spring Creek students walk to make a difference

Grade 6/7 girls take six-kilometer walk from school to Creekside

When five students from Spring Creek Elementary walked from their school to Creekside, they weren't thinking of themselves: they were imagining what it would be like to have to cover that distance everyday to get water.

The girls in a Grade 6/7 class at L'Ecole Passerelle at Spring Creek Community School did the six-kilometre trek as part of "Walk in her Shoes," a campaign to raise funds for women's education in Africa.

"I think they were really proud of themselves and I think they felt what it was like to walk six kilometres," said teacher Jane Millen.

"(They were) so revved up about helping someone not as lucky as themselves."

The walk developed out of the "I Can Make a Difference" class project, which saw students pick novels that focused on issues such as war, poverty and the environment.

One group, inspired by Canadian author Deborah Ellis's novel The Breadwinner, learned that it takes a woman in the developing world a six-kilometre walk to access water and wood for her family.

When students Shannon Isnardy, Makenna Bailey, Carly Mann, Gabby Binette and Alexandra Chafe learned this they decided to see what it would be like for themselves to walk in these women's shoes.

They set up a fundraising website through Cooperative for Assistance and Relief Everywhere (CARE), asking people to pledge money that would go toward women's education.

"You can buy an education for girls for one year for like $50," Isnardy said. "You can buy some food or bring water closer to them."

The group has raised $200 and the girls have a goal of reaching $250. Anyone interested in donating can go to

Theirs isn't the only project taking place as part of "I Can Make a Difference." Other groups are working on projects to educate people about invasive species and how to reduce your ecological footprint.

One group of boys, interested in the topic of terrorism, decided to put together a floor hockey tournament to raise money for organizations that promote peace.

Anyone interested in supporting these causes can contact Jane Millen at Spring Creek Community School at (604) 935-3822.