REGINA — Hundreds of Riffel Catholic High School students laughed and applauded as principal David Ripplinger and first year teacher Mitch Bresciani were guerilla-taped to the gym wall and teacher Connie Perreault had her hair shaved off.
It was all part of the school’s celebration as once again they topped all other Canadian high schools in the weight of food gathered during the Farm Credit Corporation (FCC) annual Drive Away Hunger campaign held Oct. 13 - 17 in six provinces. The school collected 19,125 pounds of food, which went to the Regina Food Bank.
Representatives of the Food Bank, FCC, and partner Capital Ford attended the Nov. 27 assembly held in the school gym. Capital Ford collected donated food and brought it to the school where FCC staff picked it up for transport to the Food Bank.
“The kids do just a great job putting the campaign together,” said school chaplain Pat Roth. He attributes the school’s continued success to the teachers and the students.
“The staff have been able to say to the students that they are blessed and they have a Christian duty to share that blessing with the less fortunate,” said Roth. “The students also take great pride in what they do. It makes them feel good.”
Taped music pounded through the gym and students cheered as several students taped Ripplinger and Bresciani to the wall with guerilla tape as the two stood on tables. When done, the tables were removed and the two were left hanging in their guerilla tape cocoon for the duration of the assembly, which lasted about an hour. Perrault had her hair shaved off near the end of the assembly.
“It was all for a good cause,” said Ripplinger. He wore a sweat suit with long pants. “Bresciani wore shorts and I was thinking I’m in pretty good shape,” said Ripplinger.
“I was thinking I should have worn long pants,” said Bresciani who admitted to some discomfort when the tape was ripped off his legs. “I lost a little bit of hair but it was nothing to what Connie did. It was an honour to be up there for the kids,” said Bresciani. Perreault had her usual hair dresser on hand for the occasion. “When I saw handfuls of hair coming off I thought, ‘Oh my goodness, this is for real.’ ”
The two retreated to another room, from which she emerged with a Mohawk, much to the delight of the students who stood, applauded and cheered while the remaining hair was removed.
“It was very emotional and I had a hard time retaining my composure,” said Perreault at the students’ response. “But I really appreciated their (students’) work.”