The Caring and Sharing Exchange
The Caring and Sharing Exchange began over a century ago, in 1915, as a part of the Ottawa Welfare Bureau, when the local community came together to offer support at Christmas time to the families of those called to war. Since then, the organization has been bringing together those in need with those who wish to help. Over time the Caring and Sharing Exchange has evolved, filling another community gap by adopting the Sharing in Student Success Program (SISS) in 2011.
Back to school is an exciting time for most students, but for some parents and children, it can be a stressful and daunting time; Within Ottawa, 1 in 5 children live in poverty. Even though the school year has not yet ended, the Caring and Sharing Exchange are already looking ahead to the new school year. Beginning the school year without the essentials (such as a backpack, lunch box and school supplies) can leave children at a disadvantage. They can be subject to isolation, bullying, and their self esteem can suffer.
The Sharing in Student Success Program (SISS) was adopted in 2011 and over the last seven years has provided school assistance to over 10,000 Ottawa children. Each child assisted receives a backpack filled with all of the grade-appropriate school supplies required (as outlined through the Boards of Education).
A gift to the Sharing in Student Success program makes a difference. Each year, they receive numerous letters of thanks from parents/guardians, teachers and social workers. Below is a note they received from a social worker of a 2017 SISS recipient.