Tue, 29 Apr, 2014
Three district students received 2014 Great Kids Awards from Human Services Minister Manmeet Bhullar on Sunday afternoon. Sixteen young people from across the Province were selected from over 300 nominations. In fact, 33 of those students nominated are from Edmonton Public Schools.
The three District award winners are:
Wren Kauffman, age 12 – Victoria School
Wren Kauffman is a prime example of courage, having presented his story about his gender journey. As part of his transition process, he helped educate school staff and even co-taught a school lesson on gender identity. Wren’s remarkable journey was featured in the news across Canada and around the world. He has shown others that they are not alone and that they do not need to feel ashamed about who they are.
Kassandra Gower, age 15 – amiskwaciy Academy
Kassandra Gower is a young leader with a generous spirit. She is active in her community playing competitive ice hockey and fastball. Kassandra is the President of the Amiskwaciy Rotary Interact Club – the first Aboriginal Rotary Club in Western Canada. She is leading the club in fundraising to send five club members to Belize to help other Rotarians reconstruct a playground. Not to mention, if anyone ever needs a volunteer, Kassandra is there. She beads for her friends and teachers. She does traditional dancing for school events. She even made her own traditional costume without having taken a sewing class.
Abu Husein, age 18 – Eastglen
Abu Husein is the eye of courage to many people. A few years ago, he lived in Somalia until terrorist guerillas came to recruit child soldiers. Refusing their demands, Abu’s father was tortured and killed. Abu’s mother then secretly arranged his journey out of Somalia. Eventually, Abu was left alone on a bus to Edmonton with nothing, his smuggler having stolen all of his documentation and belongings. Despite these experiences, Abu is a positive person, a top notch student and is part of his school’s student leadership committee. He has helped students identify with human rights issues and introduced immigrants to Canadian life.