By: Mike Anderson
Two sisters from Keswick have raised $750 for the Sutton Legion’s poppy campaign by knitting 400 poppies and selling them.
Madison, 15, and Megan Foran, 12, sold the poppies for $3 each, with some people donating more. They raised over $1500, of which $750 was donated to the Legion, and the balance to the Stronach Regional Cancer Centre in Newmarket.
“It was actually our stepmom’s idea,” Madison said. “She was like, ‘Oh, I found this old knitting book upstairs in your room.’ And she said, ‘I saw this really cute flower design. And I was thinking, you know, maybe you could do a fundraiser for November, and then we could donate half of it to the Legion and then the other half to the cancer centre.’”
“Both our parents are teachers, so they sent out emails to their schools, to all the other teachers and principals and secretaries. And our stepmom advertised on social media. I was surprised how quickly we sold out.”
“I’m proud that we’ve raised so much money for the foundations we’ve chosen,” added Meghan.
“They’re amazing,” said stepmom Kate Pitkin. “We have been working on this since the end of February.”
“Our neighbour and our closest friend were just recently diagnosed with cancer at the centre. So on top of supporting the vets, who are so important to us, we also felt that it was very important to donate half of our money there.”
Sutton Legion President Stephen Wiebe and Pat Gooderman, Poppy Chair, were on hand to accept the donation from Madison and Megan.
“Well, this is just awesome,” said Mr. Wiebe. “Aside from helping local veterans, the biggest thing that we try to do is engage with youth.”
“Obviously the programs that we’ve tried are working, because I’m getting calls from teachers, from students and these girls here, who recognize the importance of the poppy and the symbol of what it means, which is just a great thing for us. So, it means that even the young are remembering, which is what we want.”
Mr. Wiebe said that the girls’ donation will help local vets who need assistance.
“Right now we’re in our poppy campaign. The money that we raise this time of year goes directly to support veterans in our community. So when a veteran reaches out to us, we see what we can do.”
According to Ms. Gooderman, the Legion’s poppy campaign helps about six local veterans a year with their medical expenses and other bills.
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