Last February we told you about Helena Giamos of Branksome Hall and Lauren Essaye of Northlea, two girls who rallied Leasiders to donate their used batteries to save lives. When we last spoke, they were more than halfway to their goal of 15,000 batteries and optimistic about hitting their target. We caught up with both young ladies, now in Grade 7, to find out how the rest of the campaign went.
Their WE Day-inspired campaign Helena and Lauren’s Batteries Saves Lives wrapped up at the end of August as planned, with a whopping 34,000 used batteries! With some help from their parents, the girls spread the word at school and in town.
Helena is proud of their accomplishments. “I know in my heart that I’m helping someone survive and that makes me really happy,” she said. (Zinc deficiency affects two billion people globally, and nearly 450,000 children die annually due to complications from lack of zinc.)
Lauren was amazed to learn that six kids could be helped with the zinc of just one battery and now when she thinks of the 204,000 children they’ve helped, she feels inspired to do more.
“I learned more about what the real world is like,” Helena added.
One skill Lauren didn’t expect to gain was the knack for public speaking. She said it was hard at first when parents and students would ask her about the battery campaign, as she felt she couldn’t explain herself well. After some research and practice refining her talking points, she became more proficient in answering questions. “After a while you get used to it and you’re really proud to say you know a lot about the topic.”
The girls are still feeling charged up and inspired to help, so the campaign will be back; they’re just taking a break to regroup. To learn more, visit their Facebook page, HelenaLaurenSaveLives for updates on where to donate. The girls said they hope to collect an additional 16,000 batteries with the new campaign to make it an even 50k for Teck Resources.