Teacher Barry Krangle struggles to slide a 125-pound bin of coins to students waiting for the chance to roll the money and send it where it's needed.
The Grade 6 and 7 students at Roberts Creek Elementary School learned about the recent tsunami in Asia and decided to do something to help.
"It makes sense that the world should help out when the world is in need," said one student in Krangle's class.
The kids brainstormed with their teacher and came up with a plan to collect change from other kids on the Coast, roll it all and send every penny to the Unicef Save the Children fund.
"We're calling it Kids With Coins, and we're trying to get all the kids on the Coast to bring in their change to our school on Jan. 16," said Krangle.
Some students are organizing a dance at the school for Saturday, Jan. 15, where ticket sales will add weight to the donation bucket.
And on Sunday, Jan. 16, in coordination with the tsunami relief benefit at the Roberts Creek Hall, students will have a family-oriented benefit at the school from 2 to 6 p.m. This benefit features some of the same speakers as at the tsunami relief benefit.
In addition, many folks are choosing to donate privately to the Salvation Army tsunami relief fund. The Army, one of the first organizations into the devastated area, is applying 100 per cent of monies raised to the cause. A Gibsons man has donated $5,000 to the Salvation Army, one of the largest relief donations on the Coast.
The Kids With Coins event will also feature performances by various garage bands from the Coast, the Creek Big Band, folk artist Daniel Kingsbury, the Coast String Fiddlers and the Music Makers Teen Choir.
"We'd like kids and parents to come down to our event with whatever change they can spare to donate to Unicef and enjoy the music and speakers. Hopefully the kids will leave thinking on a more global level," said Krangle. "Our three main focuses for this event are entertainment, philanthropy and education."
The school will also have a silent auction table set up at the event. Some of the confirmed items on the table include a full set of cooking pots and gift certificates from Gibsons IGA worth $300.
Running in conjunction with the Kids with Coins event is the tsunami relief benefit at the Roberts Creek Hall from 2 to 8 p.m.This event features local and off-Coast guest speakers, a silent auction, door prizes, a slideshow and music from bands like the Bayou Dixieland Jazz Band, the Sokole Balkan singers and Joe Stanton and friends.
The event will also feature an information booth on adopting a town in Asia that is in need and a guest speaker from Doctors Without Borders, the organization benefiting from the fundraiser. Admission is by donation.
There is another tsunami relief event planned for Jan. 30 in Sechelt, being put on by 11-year-old Davis Bay student Daniella Donati.
Daniella was moved by the stories of loss in Asia and felt compelled to do something herself. She will host a Help the Kids Concert at the Raven's Cry Theatre on Sunday, Jan. 30, at 2 p.m.
Daniella has a great line-up of musical entertainers for this event, including Ken Dalgleish, Trudy Diening, Gemini, Joe Hatherill, Wind and a Prayer, Steve K, Lowry Olafson, Graham Walker, the Chatelech Senior Band and Davis Bay Elementary's Senior Choir. Tickets can be purchased at Raven's Cry Theatre and Talewind Books in Sechelt.
She asks that attendees also bring a food donation for the Sechelt Food Bank to help children and families who use the service locally.
All proceeds from this event will go to the Canadian Red Cross and Pastor Ivan Fox of Alto Refugio orphanage in Mexico, with which Daniella is involved.
"Inspired by the recent devastation in Southeast Asia and her involvement with the Mexican orphanage, she initiated this fundraising event to help these children and our community," said a press release about the event.