Dance in Common students Livia Seabourne (from left), 13, Evie MacDougall, 13, owner, operator and dance instructor Corinne Stromsten and Aubriegh Gentles, 13, are hosting the Great Canadian Battery Drive in Williams Lake as a fundraiser to raise money for scholarships for dance students affected financially by COVID-19. (Greg Sabatino photo - Williams Lake Tribune)

Battery drive fundraiser to help students afford dance class amid COVID-19 pandemic

“Evie’s always got such great ideas and I’m glad we could do something that would benefit the students”

A group of Williams Lake dancers are raising money for students who can no longer afford to pay for dance classes due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Evie MacDougall, 13, a student at Dance In Common in Williams Lake, discovered some students would no longer be able to attend classes because their parents were out of work due to the pandemic.

The fundraiser, a nationwide initiative called the Great Canadian Battery Drive, works to collect used car batteries, and batteries in general, in order to prevent them from winding up in garbages and landfills.

“I’ve been dancing five years now and it’s just a lovely way of expressing yourself through so many different ways,” MacDougall said. “It’s been a part of my life for so long I could never imagine living without it, and that’s what I was thinking we should help students be able to still dance because I would hate to ever have to stop. So, I figured if we could help out as many students as we can and help out the environment that would be great.”

The Great Canadian Battery Drive is hosted by Canadian Energy in conjunction with the Canadian Battery Association and the Responsible Battery Coalition.

READ MORE: All-boys class brings fresh new energy to Dance in Common

“They have a facility in Kamloops so once we get all the batteries I call and they send a truck to come pick it up, and then they take them back to the facility,” MacDougall said. “They weigh it all out and then they send us a cheque.”

Funds will then be assigned to Dance in Common, which reopened on Monday, July 6 after shutting down due to the novel coronavirus pandemic, where they will be turned into scholarships for students in need.

Corrine Stromsten, the owner, operator and dance instructor at Dance In Common, said she was thrilled with the idea.

“Evie’s always got such great ideas and I’m glad we could do something that would benefit the students,” Stromsten said.

“This is kind of like my family, and it’s really cool.”

READ MORE: Dance in Common hosts A Visual Dance Art Show

The Great Canadian Battery Drive in Williams Lake is scheduled to take place in the Surplus Herbies parking lot on Mackenzie Avenue on Saturday, July 18 and Sunday, July 19 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Residents are invited to drop off their batteries on site.

The students will also be collecting at residences throughout the week of July 18-22.

If anyone has a battery they would like collected they can call MacDougall at 250-305-6636.

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