Ted_Fransen_Pembina_MB_WE_Schools

October 29, 2018 The Honourable Kelvin Goertzen Minister of Education and Training 168-450 Broadway, Legislative Building

Winnipeg, MB R3C 0V8 Dear Minister Goertzen;

I am pleased to write this letter of support for the WE organization. I understand that along with many Canadian provinces, the Province of Manitoba provides an annual grant to WE. This enables WE to provide programming for Manitoba students across the province. Students and teachers in Pembina Trails gain significantly from these programs. Manitoba students develop their citizenship ideals in many different ways. WE is an excellent platform to support and sustain that journey. Our students provide countless hours of volunteer services to local agencies and organizations in addition to travelling abroad to serve those in great need. The service learning practicums that WE organizes and leads have been greatly appreciated by our students and their families. One example of this will be the trip being planned by students at Oak Park High School for 2019. They will travel to the Mara in Kenya to work in small villages to assist in delivering WE’s foundational pillars. Schools are being built and new wells are being dug in the villages where our students will live, work and learn. I had the privilege of visiting several Kenyan villages in July 2017 as part of WE’s Superintendents/Directors’ professional service learning experience. I was in awe of what our students and thousands from across Manitoba, Canada and the USA have done with very limited resources. Our Oak Park students are also raising funds to support the tuition of one Kenyan girl in her four year program. My first-hand experience with WE in Kenya and here in Winnipeg has given me confidence that our kids are in good hands and doing great things for others – while learning incredible life lessons that will serve Manitoba well. WE is much more than a single event commonly known as WE Day. It is so much more than student travel to Kenya. While our students who participate in these valued activities appreciate them, WE provides several other worthwhile educational services for students in Pembina Trails and many Manitoba school divisions. There are too many examples to provide an exhaustive list. To name several, our Pembina Trails Student Voice group has benefited from WE facilitators, our Indigenous Leadership Circle was led by WE last year, and we are currently embarking on a mental health pilot project in conjunction with Frontier School Division. On Friday, November 2 nd , WE will provide facilitators and leaders for the Social Entrepreneurship workshops at Laidlaw School. Students from Pembina Trails and Seven Oaks will join together for the day to learn more about integrating these two critical factors of a healthy community. WE is an organization that has done an admirable job of blending public education with a sprinkling of support from corporate sponsors. As a way of showing appreciation to their supporters, WE includes a moderate amount of tasteful branding. I believe that this models and

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