The Byrne Creek LEO Club: Leadership, Experience, and Opportunity
Post submitted by Lily Zhang and Angela Fu. The LEO Club at Byrne Creek Secondary School in Burnaby, British Columbia, Canada is one of more than 40 clubs at the school.
Hello, my name is Lily Zhang. I am our LEO Club’s outgoing president, and my friend Angela Fu will start her term as president next year. We are going to tell you a little bit about what makes Byrne Creek, and in particular the LEO club at Byrne, special.
First of all, we love being students at Byrne Creek! Everyone in our school feels welcomed and included. Byrne Creek is a small school with approximately 1,250 students. Even though Byrne Creek is small, our programs are well-developed and encompassing. The many diverse programs include Dance Company (in which Angela takes part), Theatre Company, Choir (Lily is a member), Jazz Bands, Leadership, and many IDS (Independent Directed Studies) courses, where students can design their own courses to take. Our school also offers Electronics, Metalwork, Ceramics, Photography, and Sculpture. Our Work Experience program encourages students to experience working in different environments and decide which future career they might be interested in. We believe our school is well-rounded; not only do we have amazing academic courses taught to us by exceptional teachers who make it fun to learn advanced placement material, but we also have many clubs that capture every student's interests, such as the LEO Club.
LEO stands for Leadership, Experience, and Opportunity. We strive to provide all of these tenets for each of our LEOs. Our LEO Club is sponsored by the Burnaby Edmonds Lions, a local committee of adults who also organize volunteering events. Our teacher sponsor inside the school is Ms. Fujiki. Ms. Fujiki guides us, giving us advice on how to organize a successful event and always supporting us in our goals. In our club, we have more than 160 members who provide service in not only our school, but also in the community. Our mission is to help one another develop our leadership and teamwork skills while giving back to the community.
One thing that is so special about our club is that there are so many teachers that who supportive. Every time that we have an event, the teachers help us so warmly! Ms. Amy, Ms. Erickson, Ms. McLeod, Ms. Siverson, Ms. Pederson, Mrs. MacDonald, and Mr. Loveday—just to name a few—are the teachers at Byrne Creek who are willing to help support all our programs at the drop of a hat! As well, anytime that we propose a new project, our administration is supportive and encouraging! We are able to do all of the things that we do because of all the adult support that we receive!
Not only do we help our local community, but we also fundraise for third-world countries. This past school year we have especially focused on fundraising for Ethiopia. We have many projects, including the Midnight Vigil and 30 Hour Famine, that pledge for clean water sanitization and sustainable agriculture. We also have many events for various causes, such as the recent Tree-Planting Project at the Byrne Creek Ravine as part of Lions' International President's mission and Tea for Seniors, which was held at our school last spring. Whenever someone contacts us, whether it be the drama department at our school or Frontier College, elementary schools or community centers, we are always welcoming the opportunities to help out wherever and whenever we can.
We believe that what makes us so special is that our Leo Club is primarily student-run. That is, we lead our own meetings and propose our own events. Our executive team meets every Friday after school, and in that time we discuss our past and future events. We talk about how we can grow as a club and contribute at the same time. Our general members meet every Tuesday at lunch. There we present new events that are available for volunteers and inform our Leos of the many amazing experiences they will encounter.
Many kids in high schools need a place where they can be comfortable with themselves and an outlet for their positive energy. Our LEO Club gives this to our students, welcoming them at all times of the year. When they join our team they become a part of our family and, through volunteering, new friendships and a sense of team spirit are formed. All our members are given the opportunity to gain new skills and to become leaders, organizers, and givers. By being in the Leo Club, we become more confident in ourselves and are proud to be able to give back to our community. We are proud to be one of Byrne Creek's major clubs and to be able to impact so many people. To be able to achieve greater things than we could ever have imagined doing just by ourselves, we wholeheartedly feel that being a part of the LEO Club is truly a life-changing experience.
Lily Zhang is a grade 12 student at Byrne Creek Secondary School. You can find her running around the school on various errands for various clubs. Being the copresident of the Leo Club has been a life-changing experience for Zhang, and she hopes everyone who reads this and learns about all the amazing things the Leo Club does will be just as inspired as she is.
Angela Fu is in grade 11 this year at Byrne Creek. She was born in Taiwan and immigrated to Canada about four years ago. Fu really enjoys learning at Byrne Creek, not only because of the numerous courses, programs, and clubs that are available, but also because of the clean environment and enthusiastic teachers. She feels welcomed in the school all the time and it is one of the few places where she feels like she can really be herself.