Three Respectful Citizenship Awards go to Horton students

Wendy Elliott
Published on February 28, 2016

GREENWICH – Three students at Horton High School were in Halifax Feb. 24 to pick up Respectful Citizenship Awards from Lt.-Gov. J.J. Grant.


Grade 11 student Mollie Symons has been involved in a number of initiatives at the school.

Symons says she’s grateful for the recognition and she appreciated hearing about all the projects that won her Nova Scotia fellow students, from Primary to Grade 12, the unique citizenship award.

“That was educational and impactful when all the groups are doing social activism,” said the Port Williams resident.

Last year, as an Interact Club member, she got involved in the Dare Campaign that raises funds for HIV/AIDs organizations in Africa. Hearing Stephen Lewis speak live was inspirational, Symons says.

This year, she chairs an active We to Me committee that gathers items for the local food bank. The group is also raising funds for a Doctors Without Borders program.

Symons says being an international student ambassador is meaningful for her when she can help those who do not speak English to feel welcome.

A keen member of the Annapolis Valley Honour Choir, she has found a way to help mentor a junior choir member who minds crowded situations.

“He’s become a dear friend,” Symons said. The 16-year-old is hoping to attend one of the United World Colleges in the next academic year.

Two other Horton students are also making a difference in their school and community. Jake Gordon and Emily MacArthur received the only Valley award in the team category for creating safe and inclusive spaces through their work with Project Unify.

Project Unify is a partnership with Special Olympics Nova Scotia to create inclusive sports clubs at schools. Currently, there is a basketball program at Horton and efforts are being made to highlight the team later this month.

The Horton students attended a ceremony at the Spatz Theatre in Halifax to receive their awards. The ceremony also marked National Anti-Bullying Day in Canada.

Did you know?

Lt.-Gov. J.J. Grant began the awards program in 2013.

"This award recognizes young people who take the initiative to make positive changes and address the difficult issues facing their schools and communities. It is my hope that this award will encourage other young people, parents and educators, to undertake activities that will create safe and inclusive spaces and inspire respectful citizenship now and in the future," Grant said.

The award recognizes students who demonstrate leadership and commitment to creating safe and inclusive spaces, where bullying is not accepted and respectful, responsible relationships are promoted.