Oshawa Boy’s Fundraising Idea Helps Kids Play Hockey
Jake Moores has been helping kids play hockey who would otherwise not be able to afford to over the past three years.
The Oshawa boy, with the help of his school — Dr. S.J. Phillips Public School — and the Their Opportunity charity, rallied and got other schools involved in a program Jake started called Dimes for Time. Schools get involved in saving dimes and after one month of collecting, the top class gets to go to a fun day at UOIT and meet some local sport celebrities as seen here with Toronto Maple Leaf Rob Pearson. Jake and all the school kids have raised more than $10,000. The Their Opportunity program has placed a lot of local kids into a sports program. Dimes 4 Time is in its third year and is running in local schools now with another ‘fun day’ slated for UOIT on Feb. 28.
— Nominated by Jill St. John
By Kristen Calis
DURHAM — Fundraising is nothing new to Dr. S.J. Phillips Public School student Jake Morres.
“Since he was a young child, he’s picked a charity,” said his mother, Jill St. John.
After years of collecting for local food banks and animal charities by asking for donations instead of presents for his birthday, at age eight Jake chose to focus on local kids when he saw some of them couldn’t afford to play sports.
“He was saving dimes from his paper route money and sent a kid in the neighbourhood to play hockey,” said his mother.
This certainly wasn’t the last time Jake would help a kid play sports.
“I just started to do that every year from then on,” said Jake.
Now 11, the Grade 6 student is pleased to see his efforts playing out on a larger scale for the second straight year at the annual Dimes 4 Time event.
“We were able to enable his dream of helping kids play sports,” said Randy Gill, president of Their Opportunity.
When members of the organization, which sponsors local kids to play sports, heard of Jake’s initiative, they found it the perfect fit to create a new event.
Now each year, students in Whitby and Oshawa schools are charged to collect change in January and February in order to help less fortunate kids sign up for sports in the Dimes 4 Time fundraising campaign.
“They’re bringing in change to make change,” said Mr. Gill.
Local businesses have also jumped on board, agreeing to match the money raised by the kids.
The top fundraising schools were invited to a special event on Feb. 22 where they played a floor hockey game with some NHL alumni and were given the opportunity to shoot some hoops against the Oshawa Power in the gym shared by the University of Ontario Institute of Technology and Durham College.
“It’s been a dream come true to me,” Jake said on a break from playing floor hockey.
Mr. Gill noted the event was especially fun for the kids since extracurricular activities have been cancelled in public schools due to labour dispute.
Former Toronto Maple Leafs right winger Rob Pearson participated in the event for the second year.
“It’s a great event,” said the Oshawa native.
He actually met Jake a few years ago when the boy’s mother approached him, requesting his attendance at her son’s birthday party.
When he learned of Jake’s goal to help local kids play sports “I said, ‘That’s great, I’ll be there.’”
He’s been happy to help out, along with fellow former Leaf Brad May.
“Now it’s just snowballed,” Mr. Pearson said.
He said it’s fantastic that Jake continues to run the program.
“It’s one thing doing it once and getting recognized,” he said.
Mr. Pearson believes sports and the value of teamwork are important parts of a childhood.
Jake said sports allow him to make friends and have fun, and he’s happy to help others do the same.
“It’s been amazing,” he said. “I’m just hoping I can make as much as last year.
Sean Lockhart, director of resource and development with Their Opportunity, said the money was still coming in, but it looked like the fundraiser would raise more than $4,000.
Although it won’t be as high as the $6,000 collected last year, he said the kids did an exceptional job considering the labour dispute.
Sherwood Public School students were the top earners this year.