Fernie Secondary School (FSS) students showed their support for the Fernie Pride Society last week, by painting rainbow crosswalks throughout town.
Currently two crosswalks have been painted, but the motivated youth will be continuing throughout the summer to expand this project and add four more crosswalks in the downtown core.
Three months ago, the student council group from FSS started brainstorming about the crosswalk project. One month ago, three representatives from student council approached the City of Fernie, presenting the proposal to which the City agreed wholeheartedly. Student council had been in contact with the Fernie Pride Society throughout this brainstorming period, and many members of the pride society were with them at council when they presented the project.
The City, FSS, and Teck, donated a total of $495 to support the cause.
With the senior and junior council combined, the FSS student council is 30 members strong.
On Wednesday, May 30, the students took to the streets and painted a crosswalk in the staff parking lot and at the rear entrance, and on Friday they cut the ribbon with a crowd of community members supporting the cause. Many members of the Fernie Pride Society were present, and admitted they were ecstatic.
Two members of the student council are a part of the District Student Advisory Council (DSAC), which brings all the schools in the district together, every four months. Here, ideas are presented pertaining to a voluntary community service project. Fernie Secondary came to the board with the idea of a rainbow crosswalk. With only six members in the DSAC for Fernie, they asked for the help of the student council.
Cynthia Kielpinski is a member of DSAC, and believes it’s important to accept everyone in the community.
“Everyone belongs,” said Kielpinski. “We just can’t have a black and white spectrum. We have to have all of the colours.
“Everyone has to be welcome, and we have to learn to accept everyone in our community,” she added. “Otherwise we’re not going to be able to be a team.”