top of page
  • Writer's pictureESSEX FREE PRESS

Cottam Scouts fundraise to put together support packages for Street Angels

by Sylene Argent

What began as a way for some of the members of the 2nd Cottam Scouts to earn their top section awards quickly turned into a true passion project, where these youths took ownership of their mission to raise money to put together support packages for the clients of Street Angels, a program based in Leamington through Feeding Windsor Essex.

On Sunday, some of the Howler Cubs – working towards earning their Seeonee Award – and Runner Cubs – who were unable to work towards their North Star Award as Beavers, due to the pandemic – hosted an Easter Treats and Hot Chocolate Fundraiser from the Cottam Esso Gas Station.

Typically, when working towards earning the Seeonee Award or the North Star Award, the Beavers and Cubs would work on a community project independently, but this group decided to work together to support Street Angels, a program that tries to provide a safe, warm space to those who need it.

Group Commissioner of Scouting, Ryan Alice, said the youths took control of meetings and tasks to make the fundraising efforts happen, and really took ownership of the project as they learned about the need. As the Program Coordinator for Street Angels, he was excited to learn the youths wanted to assist the program.

During the event, the youths collected donations that will purchase warming items, nutritious snacks, and hygiene products. The hope is to be able to purchase enough items to create 30 Easter-themed baskets filled with support items, each with a signed Easter card for Street Angels’ clients.

The youths will get a tour of the facility, so they can get a better understanding of the support it provides and the need for it in the community.

“This group of youth is so community-minded,” Alice said. “It is extremely heartening. They came up with all their ideas on their own.”

The youths organized and executed the event mostly on their own, Alice explained. Though only some of the Cubs were involved in the project, fellow group members supported them in their efforts.

Cub Jamison Heinrichs said he and his peers selected Street Angels to benefit from the community project needed to earn their top section awards, because they knew there were many individuals in need and they wanted to do their part to help.

Fellow Cub Harper Aziz expressed the importance of everyone having access to food and other necessities.

“We have to help other people; they are us,” she said.

Trevor Sayers added he and his peers were pleased with the turnout at their fundraiser and were grateful for the support shown from the community.

Runner Cubs Harper Aziz, Finnegan Cornell, and Ruby Chartier will earn their North Star Award after completing five outdoor adventure skills and five community service hours.

Howler Cubs Logan and Trevor Sayers, Myah Schraeder, and Jamison Heinrichs will earn their Seeonee Award after completing ten outdoor adventure skills and 15 community service hours.

The Street Angels Program is located at the Leamington Centre for Hope. It offers a safe, warm drop-in centre, seven nights a week, from 6pm to 10pm, for people aged 16-and-older experiencing homelessness or near homelessness, food insecurities, or social isolation.

Since it was established in Leamington in January, the need has increasexd from around 10 clients per night to around 30, Alice said.

Homelessness is not necessarily living on the street, Alice added. It can include living in a car, couch surfing, or utilizing shelters.

bottom of page