Onekama Schools Fundraiser Raises $1,305

ONEKAMA — Purple was the color of the day at Onekama Consolidated Schools on Friday.

Every student from the K-12 level in the building was wearing a purple T-shirt signifying they were joining in the fight against cancer. The annual fundraiser that is organized at the school by the student council collected $1,305, which will be donated to West Shore Medical Center to be used in programs to fight cancer.

Organizers of the Portagers Go Purple campaign realize that most people either have a family member or friend who has been touched by cancer. That is why the student council likes to get the entire school involved in the event.

Student council adviser Nikki Torrey said that the color purple was used instead of pink this year because that is the color to signify all types of cancer. Students purchase the T-shirts to show their support and the funds raised were used to go for the fight against cancer.

“We started with Portagers Go Pink in 2010 and sold about 50 T-shirts,” she said. “We were so excited with the response and support for the program that the next year we actually sent home order forms and ended up with about 200 shirts being worn on that day by the students.”

This year the program was taking place a little later than normal in October which is Breast Cancer Awareness month.

Because of that later date the student council members elected to switch things around with the color of the T-shirts.

“This year we ordered 300 T-shirts and wore the color purple to recognize all of our family and friends who have been impacted by cancer,” said Torrey.

Students formed a giant purple ribbon in the school gymnasium at the start of the event for a picture and then offered several options where students could show their support.

“We had stations set up at various locations around the gym where students could sign a name of someone fighting cancer on a giant memorial wall banner,” said student council member Kayla Feil. “There was another banner of support with their name. There also was a station where people could write out a get well card of support. The elementary students also walked laps around the indoor track.”

Onekama principal Gina Hagen said school officials were especially proud of the students.

“As educators, we get so caught up in making sure we are following the Core Curriculum, raising test scores and making sure we have a plan for all children to succeed,” she said. “Days like today make me realize that there is so much more to education, and it is great to know that we also help teach our children the joy of giving back. It make me so proud to be a Portager. We come together as one big family and truly enjoy giving back in whatever way we can. ”