In December of 2014 we saw the Canadian Pacific Holiday Train come through Tosa and it didn’t stop but there were lots of people there to see it just drive past. It made us want to learn more about the train and what its purpose is. We found out that the focus of the train is to raise awareness of food needs in communities and increase food donations in the communities where it stops. This inspired us to learn more about the food needs in our community. So we learned not only was the train really cool to watch – it also has an awesome purpose. We met with Linda Ertel, the Director of the Tosa Cares food pantry. She shared that Tosa Cares is the primary referral source for our schools and police within our community and that there is a large need for more food donations during the holiday season.
This gave us an idea! We presented our idea to make a formal request to Canadian Pacific to make a stop in Wauwatosa in 2015 to the Tosa Cares Board of Directors. They supported our idea so we shared it with the Village Business Improvement District, Chamber of Commerce, Historical Society and Mayor and they all wrote letters of support. We submitted our request, along with their letters of support. We waited months but were excited when we learned that our proposal was accepted (Yeah! Yeah! Yeah!) In early December 2015 the Canadian Pacific Holiday train made a stop in Tosa for a short trial concert. Those who attended this free concert were encouraged to provide a donation of non-perishable food items. These food items went to Tosa Cares benefiting those in our community who are in need.
Our goal was to raise awareness of this event so we have a good turn out and lots of food donations so the train would make a permanent stop in Wauwatosa each year. It worked!!
For project overview by year, click here:
Click here to view letters from our project:
- Canadian Pacific Letter of Request
- Letter of Support from Mayor Wauwatosa
- Letter of Support from the Business Improvement District
- Letter of Support from the Chamber of Commerce
- Letter of Support from the Historical Society
- Letter of Support from Tosa Cares
We have been honored with the following awards for our project. Thank you, thank you, thank you all …. see you on the tracks next year!!
- GS Silver Award & GSWISE Young Woman of Distinction Award 2016
- Tosa Cares 2016 Community and Service Award 2016
- AFP Philanthropic Youth of Today Award 2016
– Michela and Madison