| CBYE Kids
Youth in Action (Canadian Living Magazine)
KRISTIN STAWIARSKI - MAKING KIDS’ LIVES MORE MAGICAL,
A ballet dancer since the tender age of two, Kristin Stawiarski found a way to combine her compassion for others with her passion for the arts. The 17-year-old created the Kids Helping Kids Campaign three years ago to allow less fortunate children to be touched by the magic of dance.
The idea came to Kristin while she was performing with her dance company in their annual production of The Nutcracker. “I saw the happiness and excitement that children got from the show and realized some kids would never experience that because they couldn’t afford to buy a ticket,” she says.
Kristin approached the president of The Canadian Ballet Youth Ensemble to tell her about her idea of dance students raising money to send seriously ill and underprivileged children to The Nutcracker. She discovered her fellow dancers were eager to lend a hand. “They really wanted to have an impact on a child’s life beyond the actual performance, so we started canvassing for money.”
Each Christmas season, shows are performed in schools across the community, as well as in The Hamilton Place Theatre. Thanks to Kristin’s efforts, more than 600 students have been sponsored to see a performance. In addition, 10 in-school workshops are held each year to give school kids a better understanding of the arts, which is also part of the mandate of Kids Helping Kids.
“I think it’s important for all kids to be exposed to the arts and have the opportunity to create their own dream and vision in life,” says Kristin. “Seeing this ballet can motivate kids who are less fortunate than others, giving them hope and determination to work through their own personal circumstances.”
> Kristin’s Me to We Award money was donated to The Canadian Ballet Youth Ensemble