The Unfortunate Reality of the Candy Cane Gram

‘Tis the season for lots of different fun little fundraisers!

At my school the hot money maker right now is the infamous Candy Cane Gram. I get SO pumped up every time I see an advertisement poster or they talk about this over the morning announcements! It takes everything in me to not blurt out, “Two Candy Canes for Glen Cocoa! You go Glen Cocoa!” every single time. Please tell me you get that reference. If not, here is a helpful link. To be honest, I have actually impersonated the Santa from this film a minimum of 16 times so far this year…

The whole purpose behind this activity is to send candy canes to your friends, your boyfriend or girlfriend, and of course to the person who you WANT to be your boyfriend or girlfriend. These are sold for $1 by the Student Council during lunch periods. In a school of 750 kids the club makes approximately $4,292 each winter season. I’m high balling this only a little….

The day before winter break in last hour, teachers hand out these candy canes that are adorned with cute little Pinteresty “To:” and “From:” tags. This is one of my least favorite things of the year. Something that is intended to create holiday cheer is this insane disappointment for so many kids. Here is the breakdown on delivery.

1.) You always have that “one kid” who walks away with 17 candy canes. This is an indicator that 17 people are trying to buy that girl’s friendship.

2.) You always have a handful of kids who get one and the “from” tag has ?????  The chaos that ensues is a clear indicator of a secret admirer that is actually not secret at all. Everybody and their mom knows who actually sent it.

3.) You always have that one kid who bought themselves a candy cane because they simply wanted to be a part of the event.

4.) You always have a few kids who could truly care less about this whole charade in the first place.

5.) And then you always have that kid who is holding onto extreme hope that this year is going to be the year they actually get one. They hope that maybe somebody in the school thought of them. They hope maybe one person they talk to spent a dollar on them. They hope that anybody in the school simply acknowledged their presence….

This year I decided to do something about this heart-breaking experience. This year I bought 7 candy canes. As a team we picked 7 kids who are amazing, kind, compassionate, great people who totally deserve a candy cane. Not because they actually care about the cane shaped treat, but because they deserve to be recognized. In the “From:” area we pulled the classic ??? but made sure on the tag we wrote something positive that would bring a smile to their faces. We intentionally didn’t take credit for this. We wanted the kids to feel special and simply know that they are cared for and they are loved.

This holiday season remember that those little moments make a big difference!

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