Once again, I am enthusiastically participating in the Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon in support of Scientists in School. As was the case last year, the event has a virtual option to run/walk the 10K distance yourself, tracking your distance and time online. I hope that I can count on your support!
You may be wondering how Scientists in School has navigated this new COVID-19 world, given our hands-on, in-class workshop model. Well, I am honoured to have the kind of team that would be the envy of any large-sized organization - the 'little engine that could' kind of team. These past 20 months, they have given our organization's recovery everything they have, reimagining and rebuilding our programs in order to keep the joy and wonder of Scientists in School workshops happening for eager young learners, and their teachers.
After trial-testing virtual versions of our workshops in summer 2020, we launched for the September 2020 school year with one topic for each grade. By spring we had 31 topics!!!! This is a pace of program development far beyond any previous. Teacher, parent and student feedback has been a joy to read and established beyond a doubt that we hit the mark for heightening youth confidence and interest in STEM. Our virtual workshop model is rich, engaging and fun!
Over the course of the past year, we packed and shipped 200,000 mini science bags full of the curated materials that make each workshop and all topics, investigative. 200,000 eager young scientists and their teachers participated in 8,000 workshops. A silver lining amongst all the challenges for Scientists in School was that our Virtual Workshops allowed us to embrace our long-time vision of scaling nationally. By year-end we had grown from serving two provinces, to workshops happening in classrooms and community settings from sea to sea. Who knew that a pandemic would spark the innovation that would solve the travel barrier for serving all children in Canada.
As we begin our third fractured school year, it feels both exciting and a little daunting. This year we plan to run a twin-engine plane: in-class visits will relaunch when the health and safety risk reach a level when we can safely do so. And our virtual workshops have become an enduring offering. In the long-term, we will emerge stronger.
What does that mean for the importance of fundraising this year. In a nutshell - we really need to hit the ball out of the park! You can imagine that capacity investments are needed in order to run this dual workshop model and national vision. We will also need to grow funds sizably to ensure that we can concurrently grow our Adopt-a-School initiative, to embed this core tenet as we grow nationally.
Let's dream big and work together to build critical pathways to bright futures for eager young scientists right across Canada. They are tomorrow's innovators, researchers, and thoughtful citizenry. Please help me exceed my fundraising goal of $2,500 by contributing to my fundraising page.
Scientists in School engages more youth than any Canadian science education charity, museum or science centre. Last year, we reached our 10 millionth scientist! But more work still needs to be done. Your donation will help us to subsidize our workshop costs so that they remain affordable for schools and will provide free workshops to youth in low-income communities. Donate now to help us raise the next generation of frontline health workers, researchers, technologists and scientists – just a few of the STEM workers that are essential in critical times like what we are facing today!
|Donation date||Donor name||Donation amount|
|Nov 03||Marcy Railer||$50.00|
|Oct 27||Chris Pryde||$250.00|
|Oct 22||Linda Vaughan||$200.00|
|Oct 18||Michael and Cathy||$100.00|
|Oct 18||Janet Chessell||$50.00|
|Oct 18||Lucy & Andrew Radziszewski||$50.00|
|Oct 13||Michael Wosnick||$350.00|
|Oct 12||Lynda Yardley||$100.00|
|Oct 12||Jane McCarron||$50.00|