John Polanyi CI Students win SAGE National Competition for the second year in a row!


A team filled with inspired students from John Polanyi CI won the SAGE National Competition once again for their endless work involving social entrepreneurship in the Toronto Community.


SAGE (Students for the Advancement of Global Entrepreneurship) connects secondary school students with university and college students, business leaders and civic leaders to promote youth entrepreneurship and community service. Economic opportunities are encouraged in the context of ethical business practices, social responsibility, civic engagement and environmental awareness.

JPCI’s student driven team called The C.I.T.Y, ‘Change Impacting Toronto’s Youth’, not only continued their fundraising efforts from last year, but expanded their business plan to add more members, and more projects. One of their major projects was called ‘Warm Up For Winter’ where students fundraised over $1250 to create 120 kits which included toques, socks, scarves, gloves, and other needed gear for our brothers and sisters living on Toronto’s streets during the winter months. We then spent a full day volunteering at the Native Men’s Residence ( cooking lunch for all residents, and then travelling all over downtown handing out kits. Our second project involved raising funds for the victims of Nepal, where we raised $1500 in just 45 minutes.


The ‘Stalk Market’ is our major initiative revolved around Community Supported Agriculture (CSA). Shares in the garden were sold to individuals throughout the community to provide seed money for our Urban Farm, which is located around our field on school property and was pioneered through a non-profit organization called The PACT Program ( Members purchased shares for both Spring and Fall harvests through a massive sales campaign and will ultimately benefit from the delicious and organic harvest from our Urban Farm. The beauty in this project is that every bag purchased will be matched and distributed throughout our Lawrence Heights Community and 100% of funds raised will be reinvested back into our Urban Farm.


The C.I.T.Y presented our successes within the Social Entrepreneurship Business (SEB) category. As a direct result of the passion for their community service, the judging panel filled with representatives from Corporate Canada awarded us with 1st place of the SEB Category for the second year in a row.


As winners of the National Competition, we have been invited to the SAGE International World Cup Competition which will be held in Seoul, SOUTH KOREA in August 2015. With the support from JPCI, and caring individuals throughout the Toronto Community, we hope to attend this once in a lifetime opportunity which will solidify once again that our students are second to none!!! 


The students are still on cloud #9 and had the following to say:


·         Jennifer T. said, “SAGE has allowed us to be more involved in our dreams and act upon our ideas.”

·         Savannah M. said, “It’s a really amazing feeling to know that our efforts throughout the school year are being recognized once again. Overall, The SAGE experience has changed my life forever and made me a more globally aware individual.


As teachers, we are extremely proud and impressed by the work of our students, and hope they continuously find ways to utilize their passions of social entrepreneurship to fuel their action for positive change, and that they truly internalize they can always shed some sunshine in this world, as long as they are willing to choose to! 


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