On the weekend of March 23, 2013, students from Edith Cavell Elementary School participated in a project that not only tested their creativity, but also provided them with an opportunity to give back to the community.
The five students from Edith Cavell, Arthur Lee, Adam Williams, Deniz Senoglu, Jack Gray and Oliver Clease, were joined by parents and designers from Parallel Group and together they built a large-scale replica of Sesame Street character, Oscar the Grouch, using only canned goods.
Scott Gray, chairperson of Canstruction Vancouver, said that the students used a variety of non-perishable food to build the sculpture.
"This year's 'Oscar the Philanthropic Grouch' took 6,100 cans of food, ranging from baked beans, tomato sauce, fruit, tuna and assorted vegetables, making a well-rounded meal," said Gray.
The sculpture was on display downtown at the Pendulum Gallery from March 26 to April 4, and was later taken down with the canned goods being donated to the Greater Vancouver Food Bank Society.
The students were supported by the Vancouver Sun and Vancouver design firm Parallel Group. The architecture and interior design team of Parallel Group met with the students to help them choose and design their structure.
"They took down a number of ideas and came back to the kids via email to vote on their favourite of three selections," said Gray. "The group as a whole voted for Oscar."
Canstruction is a worldwide anti-hunger project that collects canned goods for the less fortunate in over 190 cities around the globe.
Since its debut 11 years ago, the local branch of this charity, Canstruction Vancouver, has collected over 1.2 million cans of food for the Greater Vancouver Food Bank. The GVFB distributes food to over 27,000 people on a weekly basis in Vancouver, Burnaby, New Westminster and North Vancouver.