Students at Victor Sammurtok School (VSS) received some early holiday cheer when they received a gift from the Northern Canada Mini Projects in Chesterfield Inlet on Dec. 13.
Northern Canada Mini Projects is a growing public group with a busy page on Facebook.
VSS teacher Ana Leishman said every single student at the school received a Christmas envelope from Mini Projects.
She said the annual process begins in early October when she sends Northern Canada Mini Projects a list of the number of male-and-female students in each grade at VSS.
She said mini projects aren’t given the names of the students, just their grade and gender.
“Once they have our student breakdown, Northern Canada Mini Projects will put that on their group page and the students will be ‘adopted’ by people from the south,” said Leishman.
“Someone, for example, might take five Grade 4 girls and five Grade 6 girls, or something along those lines, and they pack an envelop and send it to Northern Canada Mini Projects.
“They’re regular-sized 8.5 x 11 envelopes the people who participate in the project might fill with things like, maybe, a colouring book and crayons for the younger kids, maybe a little Christmas tree, a packet of hot chocolate, a pair of socks or mittens and something just for fun.
“They’re small, but the kids love it and it’s a pretty cool experience for them to open their own little gifts with their friends at school, play with them for a little bit and then take them home to show their moms and dads what they got at school.”
Leishman said Northern Canada Mini Projects has been sending the holiday envelops to the Chester students for the past four years.
She said the envelopes are a small gift that represent a really nice gesture from folks in the south, and the VSS students really look forward to receiving the envelopes every year now.
“The youngest of our students have no idea what’s going on but many of our older students always ask if they’re getting Christmas envelopes again this year.
”It’s not something that they’ve come to expect, but they really do get a little excited about it.
“And, you know, it really does send a message to our kids that there are people across our country who think about them up here in the North and really do care about them.
“That’s a pretty cool message for the kids to receive at any time, but especially around Christmas.”