Cookies and care

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Local teen raises donations for food bank

Baking may be a holiday tradition for some to enjoy the treats, but Mohammed Tolba spent his two weeks off school on holiday break baking up an impressive amount of cookies — all for a good cause.

“I just really wanted to help the homeless in the community,” said Tolba. The teenager spent his break making and selling cookies to raise money and donations for the local food bank to help his community.

It began as a school project where Tolba was researching what he could do to help, and he came across homelessness rates for the area and couldn’t believe how much of a problem it is. Having made cookies for school events before, he thought he would try the same approach.

“I thought cookies were a great idea, with it being Christmas and all,” he said. Once the cookies were baked Tolba used his mother’s Facebook account to advertise the treats that he was trading for donations.

“Basically after that, I just went around,” said Tolba about going door to door with his wares. “Most people were really positive about it and they were encouraging me to keep doing what I’m doing.”

In total, Tolba managed to raise more than $600 worth of food donations and $105 in cash donations. The teen was happy to be able to help the food bank.

“They were just really pleased with the donation, especially that time of year their donations were down,” he said about the time just after the holidays.

Tolba shared that he couldn’t have done it all himself though, giving credit to his mother for helping him make the many cookies as well as his grandmother for supplying him with the warm sweaters she made to keep him cozy during the door-to-door fundraising.

After receiving the donation the Pictou County Food Bank East posted praise to Facebook about the generous donation from the high school student: “The Pictou County Food Bank East is very taken by this young man’s act of kindness and the initiative, generosity, and sense of community this young man has bestowed upon ours.” Tolba was pleased that the post had reached so many others, but true to his nature, for unselfish reasons.

“That post has reached 21,000 reactions so that’s really good for the food bank,” he said.

Mohammed Tolba, NRHS student, prepared dozens of cookies to help get donations for the local food bank.