Students Transformed by “Build-Grow-Share Kindness Project”

By: Karissa SchatPosted On: March 12th, 2021

DONOR STORIES: Children in Northern BC build beautiful wooden crates to support a Korah student.

Over the course of 2020, many of us hungrily scoured the internet for uplifting stories.

We still cannot get enough.

It is still so crucial to be sharing touching moments with one another, remembering what is still beautiful and filled with wonder in this world, while taking a brief respite from the constant uncertainty and apprehension surrounding us.  

Let me share a sponsorship story with you, one which deeply impacted me this winter. I hope it touches your heart as well!

Late this fall, we received an email from Cordell Ware, the Vice Principal at William Konkin Elementary School (WKE) in Burns Lake, BC. He explained to us their school was experimenting with a pilot program called the “Build-Grow-Share Kindness Project”. WKE school was teaching their students how to build rustic, hand-crafted wooden crates and grow gardens of fresh produce. The nutritious veggies were donated to their local food bank, and the crates were sold to raise money for a student in need. The goal was connecting these children to the transformative power of compassion and care for others.

Cordell hoped to sponsor a young student through Hope for Korah and asked if we knew of a child in need? Our answer was a resounding: “yes!”

We shared with Cordell the story of a young boy named Beniam who needed private education. We passed on photos and a video, excited to share the story of need with these elementary school students!

One young girl was deeply impacted by Beniam’s story. She watched the video about his family with her Kindergarten class and felt compelled to do something more. This little girl decided to go home and ask her parents if she could do some chores around the house for a special allowance. She shared about the boy who lived ALL the way on the other side of the world and needed her help. She explained she was going to do all she could to ensure he would get the chance to go to school. Over the next several days, She earned bit by bit through doing household chores. At the end of the week, the little girl headed straight for the school office to proudly present her hard-earned cash, in the amount of $5.00. “This is for my friend Benjamin*,” she said.

This was only one of the beautiful stories of compassion through the “Build-Grow-Share Kindness Project”.

Cordell shared how many of the children in the school wrestled with navigating anger and other strong emotions. Some of these children were considered at-risk or marginalized, in an area affected by a range of systemic, socio-economic issues. Cordell watched in amazement as WKE children learned to fuel their anger into productive energy, constructing boxes when feeling strong emotions. The children watched in awe as something beautiful emerged from their own hands! The “Build-Grow-Share Kindness Project” was transforming their school and changing lives for the better.

Early in January, this dedicated Vice Principal sent us letters, photos and even a disassembled crate with tools for Beniam to assemble. Only a week later, a backpack showed up with clothing, school supplies, and beautiful drawings from WKE students. One drawing showed a girl holding hands with a boy with the letter “B” on his shirt. The description read: “me… and you”.

We are inspired by WKE’s “Build-Grow-Share Kindness Project”, and so grateful for their support of Beniam’s education. This is the power of partnership: vulnerable children transformed through relationship. We are excited to be a part of these students’ journey of compassion, and pray for continued growth and empowerment on both sides of the world!

*Benjamin is the English version of the Amharic name Beniam.


Photo Credit: Karen Ware

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