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Going WILD for a cause

Del City High School junior AJ Smithers running ball – playing sophomores during a powderpuff football game at part of WILD Week. The school’s annual philanthropy week raised more than$13,000 for the Oklahoma Children’s Cancer Association this year. (Photo by Jonathan Terry)

Del City students raise money for childhood cancer research

By Tonya Little
Contributing Writer

Every spring the students and faculty of Del City High School come together to help raise money for charity. They call the week that this happens WILD week. ​WILD Week stands for Willing Individuals Leading with Determination. It started in 2003. From 2003-2009, the school would either select an individual or a charity to raise money. The school usually raised about $5000-$10,000 during that time.

In 2011, the faculty sponsors talked about WILD Week and the charity, and decided to stick with one charity to form a relationship, and that is what they have done. They had already been working with the Oklahoma Children since 2010, and this was the charity they chose to stay with in honor of one of the WILD week sponsor teachers, Katherine Lopez who was murdered in 2011. The Oklahoma Children’s Cancer Association was selected originally because a student named Trevor Duhon who was a member of the OCCA introduced the charity to DCHS. Duhon became a para last year with special eagles and lost his battle with cancer last year right before WILD Week.

Del City students raised more than $13,000 for the Oklahoma Children’s Cancer Association during their annual philanthropy week. (Provided photo)

“For the past 9 years, we have raised over $104,000 and volunteered over 2,000 of community service. The community service is what most schools do not do when they pick a charity, so this is what I am most proud of. This year we have volunteered 290 hours and our goal is $10,000,”  said Kristy Cooper, Intervention Specialist, Leadership Teacher and Student Council Adviser.

This year WILD week took place the week before Spring break in March, and raised $13,489.04, of which Kerr Middle School helped raised $4114.90. This brings the total to $121115.99 raised in 10 Years for the OCCA.

“Wild week is a time where everyone can be involved. It’s a time when people who want to help get the opportunity to run an event and feel the satisfaction of watching the event succeed and realize that they made a difference,” said Jasmine Cooper, a junior.
In fact 250 students showed up at the WILD Week planning meetings that were held before the event to coordinate the activities. The school accomplished their fundraising goals in a variety of fun ways that encouraged school spirit and student support. That included black light shows, a Quiz Bowl, Powder Puff sports games between students and faculty,  dress up days, Penny wars, a teacher pie in the face event, dares and more. They also invite the students of Kerr Middle School to help, and they definitely did that.

“Wild Week was pretty stressful and I honestly didn’t know how everything would go in order to raise money for the OCCA but it actually turned out really good and I had a great time the whole week,” said Jaya Barnes, senior and Student Council president.
This week is not only about giving back in a big way, but it also teaches the students many great skills including creativity, leadership, event organization, finances, and compassion, just to name a few. Allowing the students to take the lead in this event empowers them to strive for great goals, which raised their confidence and self sufficiency. It’s a fantastic program all the way around.

“I love wild week because it brings people from different organizations together to raise money for a good cause and even though we don’t get the money, it’s pretty rewarding,” said Aanunique Holmes, junior.

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