Last year’s Vancouver, BC-based Class Act winners, Shoshana Burton, Jessie Claudio, and their students, couldn’t keep their phenomenal ideas to themselves this past school year, submitting an amazing series of projects for this year’s Class Act challenge as well. This time, with the organizational efforts of the sixth and seventh grade students of Vancouver Talmud Torah, local community members were gifted with a myriad of kind gestures over a span of several months.
Among the projects were a Random Acts of Chesed Race, in which students and their families gathered together to spread kindness across the city through a series of small acts; a holiday gift exchange with a neighboring Catholic school, during which students shared in one another’s traditions; and a donation drive for a nonprofit working to provide shoes to children in Haiti and the Dominican Republic (Ruben’s Shoes), for which the group collected over 710 pairs. In addition, the group also paired up this spring with the local Catholic school and the Muslim Shia Ismaili community to distribute care packages to the homeless community in Vancouver — a project that not only helped the homeless, but the students as well.
“The focus was not only on handing out necessities and food to needy people but also to interact with them with compassion and restore their hope to make sure they understand that they are not forgotten,” wrote Shoshana in March, adding that the projects were meant to “build bridges of understanding that we are more of the same than different.”
Shoshana, Jessie, and the students of Vancouver Talmud Torah impressed Random Acts yet again, not only with their tenacity, but with their sincere love for their fellow community members, and for that, we’ve awarded them one of our coveted runner-up spots in this year’s Class Act competition.
Congrats, guys — you’ve absolutely, positively, 100 percent earned it!
Check out the Vancouver Talmud Torah students having some fun with their local community members below (via RAC Race VTT/Facebook):