Students Attend Hope in the City Breakfast

By Jiayi Li ’20, Service Council

On Wednesday, December 3, Service Council had the opportunity to attend Salvation Army’s annual Hope in the City Breakfast. It was heartwarming to see the room filled with so many generous supporters of an important cause. One of the highlights was hearing Arlene Dickinson, self-made entrepreneur (you might recognize her name from Dragon’s Den), reflect upon her personal experiences.

Below are student reflections from the event:

“The Hope in the City Breakfast brought together hundreds of individuals passionate about giving back to the community. From businesses and organizations to school groups like us, keynote speaker Arlene Dickinson, of Dragon’s Den and Venture Communications fame, had a message for all. Although she touched on business decisions and her rise as an entrepreneur, what made her speech so compelling was her recounting of personal and relatable stories from her childhood and how these have shaped who she is today.

I found one of her messages particularly cogent: someone might achieve a certain level of celebrity but their personal situation and narrative can be vastly different than their perceived image. This is applicable to those on TV, yes, but it’s important to keep this message in mind for all those we interact with. Ms. Dickinson’s was an eloquent take on "never judge a book by its cover," no matter how glossy or ornate that cover may be.” – Jiayi Li ‘20

“Every time I hear this statement, it becomes more profound: “Learn to listen and step back.” When Ms. Dickinson spoke these words, I immediately nodded and smiled. As someone who prefers to listen, these are words that I live by, but it’s also a gentle reminder to not be afraid to speak up when necessary. Our world is constantly filled with talk, whether on the news, at school or with friends. Sometimes, a little calmness among the chaos is what we need. Quiet leadership and humbleness can speak volumes.” - Nathan Shin ‘20

"The breakfast provided even more hope for the future and described what a necessity it is to give. I've donated my old clothes to Salvation Army and similar organazations before but I never really understood how important this small action really was. After witnessing the hardships and triumphs of this year's Hero of Hope, I realize that such small things can make a tremendous impact on others. Everyone has the ability to help and to make someone's day better." - Jack Millos '23 

This holiday season, Service Council encourages you to indulge in the gift of giving, with a reminder that December 13 is the last day to donate to our Ray-Cam Drive. Stay warm and enjoy the last weekend before Winter Break!