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August 22, 2020

During these challenging times, we asked members of our shared communities to nominate students in need of a helping hand to receive a Thrift Store gift certificate to get ready for the school year. We are so excited and honored to be able to announce our first Back to School nomination gift certificate recipient: Beckett from Winnipeg, MB.

“I would like to nominate a very special student named Beckett. Beckett lives with Cystic Fibrosis, a progressive degenerative disease compromising his respiratory and digestive systems. He also has Cystic Fibrosis related diabetes, a compromised auto immune system, a fear of needles, a learning disability, and more. But above all these health challenges, he has a love of life, a quirky sense of humor, and a strong will to overcome.” – Debbie Smith, family friend

The start of a new school year is an exciting time for most students, but Beckett, who is entering grade seven this September, has an exceptional reason to be excited.

“We got the green light from Beckett’s medical team this week that they support the idea of him going back to school,” says Beckett’s mother, Desneige. “The fact that he’s well enough to go is over the moon exciting for him.”

Although Beckett missed most of the school year due to lengthy hospital stays last year, he still managed to graduate elementary school and is now looking forward to starting French immersion in junior high. Beckett is looking for new clothes and cool finds to help prepare for his new adventure, as well as a desk to complete schoolwork at home and an alarm clock to help get ready in the morning.

Although Beckett will not be able to visit the Thrift Store himself due to his compromised auto immune system, he will be picking out items over Facetime while his mom helps him shop in their local Winnipeg store.

Throughout his life Beckett has had to overcome many hurdles, and COVID-19 has brought a new set of challenges to him and his family as they balance protecting him from life-threatening risks with enabling him to live an abundant life.

“Another thing Beckett is looking forward to about going back to school is competitive diving. He always wants to be in the pool,” says Desneige. “He is also the greatest animal lover I have ever met. He will literally rescue a stink bug off the side of the car because he doesn’t want it to get hurt.”

Beckett’s Back to School gift certificate will help him put his best foot forward in September on his new journey. “We didn’t know we had been nominated,” says Desneige. “We feel so very loved, and this gift certificate is well-appreciated.”

We have been touched by the Back to School nominations that have been submitted and will continue to share stories from the gift certificate recipients. To nominate someone that needs some extra help preparing for the school year, simply send an email to with the name of the person you are nominating, as well as an explanation of why you are nominating them. Nominations will be accepted until September 7th, 2020. For more information, click here.

Thank you for your ongoing support as part of the Salvation Army Thrift Store community. Together, we are helping build stronger communities.