I’m sure you’ve seen the little plastic or cardboard donation boxes sitting beside the cash register at your local variety store or donut shop.
They’re usually filled with nickels and pennies left over from customer purchases. I don’t often use them because, to be honest, I wonder if the coins inside ever get to the charities.
Well, today I decided to take a leap of faith and slide my donation into a box for Kids Help Phone.
They certainly deserve all the help they can get. I checked their website when I got home and found out that Kids Help Phone is “Canada’s only toll-free, 24-hour, bilingual and anonymous phone and online counselling, referral and information service for children and youth.”
Kids can call or email them for help on issues that range from school, dating and family problems, to bullying, addiction and abuse.
Their site also includes an area where kids can share stories and write letters that they may never send but may help them work through a problem.
I found many of the kids’ stories in the sharing section very sad, some downright frightening, but others made me smile. Here are two of those:
“I’m really happy. I am going through a confusing time in my life, but I am very proud. I got my drivers’ permit today. In my province, the test is given in two parts. In the first part you answer multiple-choice questions on general knowledge…and I got a 90% (80% is a pass) so YAHOO! The second part is the road sign test. I got 100%. Yahoo…so I passed! I’m so stoked. I hope to go driving with my Dad tonight…the first time I will ever drive. I will tell you how it goes.”
“Thank you to all the Kids Help Phone counselors, both in the French and English divisions, who have been so kind and helpful each time I wrote to them. They have always given me the listening ear and the encouraging words I so desperately needed.
“I have been incredibly fortunate to meet face-to-face with two of the Kids Help Phone counselors, and it was definitely great to get to see some of the people who, every day, answer the calls and messages of other like me with such devotion. I will never forget that day, or the faces of those counselors, because they mean so much to me.”
P.S. This Christmas song also makes me smile. It’s from Toronto’s own Dala, called “Hockey Sweater” (how Canadian can you get?!)