In this edition of our newsletter, our neighbour profile focuses on the younger side of Don Mills. Sam Ksiazek has lived with his family in Don Mills all his life. That being said he’s only 10. Started school at Greenland and it now attending St. Bonaventure. He has 2 sisters, a cat and is hoping for dog this year. Sam plays Baseball at Bond Park for the NYBA, takes Karate and Diving lessons and loves to sail in the summer and snowboard in the winter. When asked how his grades were because he’s so busy, he modestly answers “well they’re good – I get mostly A’s.” He can’t wait until he’s 12 so can join the Army Cadets. He proudly talks about his family serving in the army and all the volunteer work they all do.
When Sam was 6 he met a bunch of kids up north in the Muskokas. He knew right away these children were some how different. He found out they weren’t different – they were fighting cancer. He tried to imagine being in their shoes – the doctors and hospital visits, missing school, not being able to play hockey on the street and all the things we take for granted. The children that he had met were going to a summer camp called OOCH. They offer summer camps to kids who are facing difficult circumstances, Camp OOCH gives these kids what they need most – the chance to be defined by who they are and not what they have.
Sam was so taken by what he had learned, that on his next birthday he asked everyone for cash, so he could donate it to the camp. Four years later he has donated over $2,000 to the OOCH. Hoping one day when he’s old enough he can volunteer there.
When I told Sam he was a special kid, he said “not really, I just want all kids to have fun”.
If you like to find out more about OOCH or donate please go to www.ooch.org