Students learn the meaning of service & helping others
It's amazing how collecting such a little thing as a can tab can make such a difference in a person's life. It all started with Kade Hogg and his family. His great-grandmother, Annette Tanner, lives in Shreveport and has a neighbor whose grandson is fighting leukemia. His name is Cameron Varnell, and he is a typical 11-year-old who loves to play and have a good time. She asked that they help collect can tabs to send to St. Jude's Research Hospital. They had been doing this for over a year when Kade decided it would be neat to get all of Baker-Koonce involved.
"I wanted to tell my class about it, because it's just a little thing to do. Everyone agreed it was a good idea, so we made posters for the walls and made announcements every morning. We put a big tub inside the front door of the school so that when kids walked in each day, they could toss in their tabs. It wasn't long before we had over 6000 tabs collected, " says Kade. Classmate Blake Soape helped spark the collection by bringing in 60 pounds of tabs (his dad owns a recycling company!).
Kade's homeroom teacher, Mrs. Gina Dodge, decided the students should turn this venture into a learning experience as well. "We started researching some things on our own about cancer. In one lesson we learned which foods to eat to help prevent cancer. Through our research, we found out the tabs are converted to a monetary donation. Ten pounds of aluminum is about the cost of one treatment of chemo. We even had a contest to see which student could guess how many tabs were collected and how many treatments our donation would provide. Through this project, students have gained insight into the meaning of service and helping others. Kade was the mastermind behind it all."
Once the can tabs were on their way to Tennessee, Cameron's family wrote a thank-you note to the students. "Your enormous donation will be such a beautiful gift for so many hurting children. We would like to thank Kade especially for his determination to support Cameron in this way. Your kindness and generosity will never be forgotten." Kade's mother, Tammy White, said she would love for her son to get to meet Cameron some day. "I was really proud of him to go to the extent he did by getting the school involved. What they accomplished will provide six cancer treatments for some child."
Even though Kade is small in stature, he has a heart as big as Texas, and, like he said, "It's just a little thing to do."