RAYS holds annual holiday reception
RAYS – Resources for Area Youth Success – held its holiday reception at the Royal Canadian Legion in Creemore on Friday, Dec. 27.
This annual event is held to thank the many volunteers and donors that make RAYS’ work possible and to recognize the accomplishments of the students they support.
The 2019 edition was among the best attended with a total of 60 participants including 10 scholarship students, six bursary recipients and one recently graduated scholarship student. Discussion was lively as all parties shared stories from the prior year and aspirations for 2020.
RAYS board chair Judy Alexander, welcomed everyone including other board members, committee members, students’ sponsors, donors, parents, students and siblings. She also thanked the Legion for their hospitality and generous support of RAYS’ efforts.
Abby Ruppert, who will graduate in 2020 with a degree in Kinesiology from Acadia University in Wolfville, Nova Scotia, addressed the group on behalf of the scholarship recipients. Abby expressed her appreciation for the support she has received from RAYS saying, “I am so incredibly thankful to RAYS and all of the people who both directly and indirectly have supported, helped, encouraged, and pushed me to where I stand today. To the board members, the sponsors, our mentors, the selection committee, and so many others, you have all provided both me and all of the other students with both education and networking opportunities that may not have been possible without your help!” She looks forward to remaining a part of the RAYS community in service of future scholarship recipients as they pursue their post-secondary education.
Allison McLeod, who is in her first year of Business studies at Fanshawe College in London, Ontario, spoke about her transition to college life and her appreciation for the support she has received from RAYS as part of that process, reporting that, “My year has been going extremely well so far but of course it comes with some ups and downs, second tries and lots of adjustments. Overall, I am enjoying my first year back at school and am very grateful for all the help and support I have received from everyone at RAYS. I would love to come back to the Clearview area after finishing school and be able to give back to our amazing community.”
The three scholarship students graduating in 2020 and one RAYS alumnus in attendance were presented with a copy of the book The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho. It was an invitation to consider the lessons from the journey taken by the book’s main character, Santiago, and how his experiences might shape the decisions and choices the students might make about their lives after graduation.
RAYS will be offering both Scholarship and Bursary funding again in 2020.
Scholarship and Bursary applications, for students continuing education in September, will be due in early May.
More information on timing and process will be available in advance of the deadline on RAYS new website which is currently under construction.