Sacred Heart CHS Shows Its Spirit by Helping Those with Cancer

Sacred Heart CHS Shows Its Spirit by Helping Those with Cancer

Sacred Heart Catholic High School in Newmarket, Ontario, has restarted a cherished tradition that highlights the school’s culture of having fun and helping others.

On May 31, 2024, roughly 600 students and staff participated in Relay for Life, raising $145,000 for the Canadian Cancer Society through 12 hours of challenging outdoor activities and good times experienced together as a school community.

“I did not think a school fundraising $140,000 was reasonable. It sounds like a lot,” said Sacred Heart CHS Principal Danny Dilallo. “But, you know, we’ve done it! And it is mostly because of the kids.”

This incredible accomplishment was common in Sacred Heart’s history, but unfortunately, the pandemic put this school tradition on pause in 2018.

“Pre-pandemic Sacred Heart had participated in Relay for Life and had done very well,” said Principal Dilallo. “We decided it was time to return to it because of the sense of community that it built, but also because of the sense of community it strengthened.”

An organizing committee of students and staff worked throughout the school year to bring this complicated event together. On the weekends, participating students travelled throughout the Greater Toronto Area, finding creative ways to solicit donations. Everyone at the school was eager to do their part for this day of funding cancer research through lots of fun.

“This is widely regarded as one of the best days of the year – if not one of the best days that any student will have here at Sacred Heart,” said Jonah James, Senior Student Trustee and co-lead organizer for Sacred Heart’s Relay for Life.

While the day was fun, it was also an incredible opportunity to teach important lessons to the students.

“Everything we do is guided by the teachings that Jesus has given us,” said Principal Dilallo. “Caring for those in need. Humility – or as we like to say, servant leadership. Teaching the kids the idea of service. You may not be able to truly teach the students the meaning of those values without an event like this.”

All those at the event spoke of the need to help those affected by cancer, a disease that everyone in Canada has a connection to in some way. Seven cancer survivors from the neighbourhood around Sacred Heart joined in the school’s opening ceremony. That concern for others is what makes Sacred Heart CHS a special school community.

“This event speaks well to what Sacred Heart is, its community and what it represents,” said James. “You will not find another high school that will raise $150,000 anywhere else.”

Thank you to Sacred Heart staff champions Angely Paulino, Jill Brennan, Peter Aluzzo and Petra Fera for everything they did to make this amazing accomplishment possible. The students on the executive committee also deserve a huge congratulations for their hard work.

The next time that Sacred Heart organizes a Relay for Life, they will undoubtedly surpass a $1 million lifetime fundraising milestone. If you would like to add this remarkable achievement, you can do so by.

Sacred Heart CHS Shows Its Spirit by Helping Those with Cancer

Sacred Heart CHS Shows Its Spirit by Helping Those with Cancer

Sacred Heart CHS Shows Its Spirit by Helping Those with Cancer

Sacred Heart CHS Shows Its Spirit by Helping Those with Cancer

Sacred Heart CHS Shows Its Spirit by Helping Those with Cancer

Sacred Heart CHS Shows Its Spirit by Helping Those with Cancer

Sacred Heart CHS Shows Its Spirit by Helping Those with Cancer

Sacred Heart CHS Shows Its Spirit by Helping Those with Cancer

Sacred Heart CHS Shows Its Spirit by Helping Those with Cancer

Sacred Heart CHS Shows Its Spirit by Helping Those with Cancer

Sacred Heart CHS Shows Its Spirit by Helping Those with Cancer

Sacred Heart CHS Shows Its Spirit by Helping Those with Cancer

Sacred Heart CHS Shows Its Spirit by Helping Those with Cancer