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IN THE NEWS - Lakie students build doghouses for local families in need

November 28, 2018

Lakie students build doghouses for local families in need

READ FULL STORY IN LETHBRIDGE STORY Here

Grade 7 student Vivian Moore from G.S. Lakie Middle School sits next to the dog house that her and her classmates constructed to give back to local families in the community. Herald photo by Greg BobinecG.S. Lakie Middle School shop class and shop club students are using their learned trade skills to help local organizations and businesses in Lethbridge.

During the semester, the students built five doghouses as part of a school project, which will then be given to local families in need with furry friends, that serve as special-needs dogs for disabled, FASD or families with financial disabilities.

“It is my first year as the shop teacher here, and starting a new program I was trying to find ways to make it more inclusive and community-based,” says Gord Smith, the shop teacher at G.S. Lakie. “It evolved through talking with community members and partners, and we were fortunate to have Charmed Playhouse, who donated the design for the doghouse, and finding materials were helped out by Logic Lumber, Home Depot and Freddies Paint were wonderful to help kick-start the project.”
Pet Parade donated food and toys for the dogs, Paws On the Run Training donated obedience classes, and Lethbridge Family Services helped find fitting homes for the handmade doghouses.

“Historically, Home Depot isn’t as involved in schools. We tend to support non-profit organizations which are a very important part of our value, and when Gord reached out to us with the whole idea that he wanted to encourage his students to get involved in the community, that is right up our alley,” says Lane Shumlich, Pro Sales Manager for Home Depot.

“It is nice to see the finished product. We have worked with Charmed Playhouse before and Family Services have a long-standing partnership now, so it was nice to see a combination of these things go off.”

Lethbridge Family Services got involved after Home Depot suggested them for finding the families to receive the doghouses. Through their research, they found homes for all of them and delivered two to deserving families last week.

They were even able to find a local student at the school through their Angel Tree Program who was a deserving fit for the gift.

“Home Depot suggested Family Services be involved in the dog house project, because 90 percent of our clients are families that have some sort of need whether that is financial, or grief, FASD, or disabilities, so we were a good fit for finding the people that they wanted the dog houses to go to,” says Michelle Gallucci, Director Advancement and Communications at Lethbridge Family Services.

“I can’t believe the effort that the children have put into these dog houses, and this is absolutely teaching them about philanthropy. The dog houses were so cute, and this was truly a community collaborative effort and it was wonderful to be a part of it.”

G.S. Lakie, along with all of their partners will be continuing the Dog House Project through the next
two semesters of the school year.

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