Corunna student organizes pizza fundraiser for Ukraine

Lilly Nead, centre, a Grade 7 student at St. Joseph Catholic School in Corunna, organized and hosted a pizza fundraiser to help those impacted by the Ukraine crisis. She’s joined here by Kindergarten students, from left, Owen Scott, Aria Gibson, Anna Faerge, Sutton Teschke, Evo Tuckey and Carter Dunn. Tara Jeffrey Photo

Tara Jeffrey

The more Lilly Nead heard about the war in Ukraine, the more compelled she felt to act.

“It was really impacting me,” said the Grade 7 student at St. Joseph Catholic School in Corunna, which last month welcomed a new student from the Ukraine.

“These families who came here to start a new life, and the people still there — I felt like I had to do something.”

So Nead approached teacher Daniel Cicchelli and principal Colleen Cogghe about hosting a fundraiser to benefit those impacted by the war in Ukraine. They decided on a pizza day.

Nead reached out to Sissios Pizza in Corunna and recruited her parents to provide jumbo freezies, to be sold for $2. Most importantly, she got people talking.

“She took this all on herself,” Cicchelli said. “The students are getting involved and wanting to support. I actually heard one say, ‘I want to buy five slices to help more people.’”

Students and staff were encouraged to wear yellow and blue — the colours of the Ukrainian flag — for the fundraiser, which brought in 71 pizzas and dozens of freezies.

In total, the school raised $1,200 to support resettlement efforts at Sarnia’s St. George’s Ukrainian Catholic Church.

“We’ve started some really important conversations,” said Cogghe. “It’s been a great opportunity for Lilly to show that you can make an impact, beyond the walls of the school.”