“I Bawled. It was Just So Much Food. I Never Expected that Good would Come from this Situation. There is Just So Much Bad News, and Sometimes Kids can have Such a Bad Stigma. What They Did was Wonderful”

Thanksgiving in Canada occurs on the second Monday of October. A little before Thanksgiving of 2012, vandals destroyed the Liftlock Community Garden plot of Jennifer Olauson’s family, a garden that her six-year-old son had worked very hard on. Before teaching a class to her students at Fleming College in Cobourg, Ontario, Canada, Ms. Olauson asked for permission to speak about something not related to the subject of the design-and-layout course. She then vented her feelings about the vandalism. The vandals had ripped up the garden and had apparently played baseball with the vegetables. She said, “It was just a mess.” Her son was devastated. The Friday before Thanksgiving, her students did a good deed. Sometimes, students take off early for a long holiday weekend, but lots of students showed up for class. Ms. Olauson said, “It was just weird. I was thinking, ‘It’s the Friday before a holiday. … What are they all doing here?’” Her students had collected money and had purchased a fall harvest for her and her family. When she entered the classroom, the harvest was on her desk. She said, “I bawled. It was just so much food. I never expected that good would come from this situation. There is just so much bad news, and sometimes kids can have such a bad stigma. What they did was wonderful.”

For Further Information: Sarah Frank, “Fleming teacher surprised by students’ good deed.” Mykawartha.com. (Peterborough, Ontario, Canada). 19 October 2012

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