The BC Schools of Character held a youth forum on courage on Feb. 8 in Abbotsford.
The event, sponsored by Prospera Credit Union, was hosted by Eugene Reimer Middle School and principal Ian Levings, and drew more than 260 students from 22 schools across the Fraser Valley.
Eugene Reimer students opened the event by performing Stand By Me.
Mountain Elementary and Eugene Reimer student leaders, who spent weeks helping to organize the forum, greeted special guests.
Students had the opportunity to listen to several guest speakers share their stories of courage, including Mayor Henry Braun, Police Chief Mike Serr, Fire Chief Don Beer, Gabby Waddell, Shervin Azar, Vandy Britton, Shirley Hardman from University of the Fraser Valley, and many more.
Serr shared his recent experiences with the students and discussed the importance of having the courage to ask for help if they need it.
Braun recalled his experience as a new immigrant, inspiring the youth to be true to who they are and use their courage to make the community stronger.
Students participated in art activities during breakout sessions and learned to appreciate, empathize and acknowledge the courageous acts being shared as a part of the colorful fabric of the City of Abbotsford.
For more information, follow #CharacterBCcontest on Instagram as as students post acts of courage and are entered into a contest to win an $800 Google phone donated by Tom Harris Cellular.
Donations to the youth forum were made by Save-On-Foods, Famosa, Tourism Abbotsford, Staples, McDonald’s, and London Drugs.