‘Tots’ captures the magic of Christmas | Bonner County Daily Bee


Jeremiah Thoronka grew up in the Sierra Leonne slums amid the country’s civil war.

The heat came from the wood, as did the lighting. Classmates fell behind in their homework, having no way to study after dark.

Jeremiah became determined to do something.

Now 21, the student has invented a way to turn the kinetic energy created by traffic and pedestrians into clean energy for nearby homes and businesses, according to the Good News Network website.

His startup, Optim Energy, has successfully installed two devices, which convert vibrations into electric current, in his hometown of Makawo. It – supplying 150 nearby homes and 15 schools. In a country where only 26% have access to electricity, his invention brought electricity to 10,000 people.

“I wanted to develop a more sustainable energy system, educate people on energy efficiency and stop their overuse of natural resources,” he reportedly told a BBC reporter. “The sun doesn’t always shine, the water dries up, fossil fuels won’t always be used, but people are always on the move.”

Now a student at Durham University where he is working on a Masters in Sustainable Development, Jeremiah was awarded the first Chegg.org Global Student Prize 2021. The prize, which is accompanied by a one-time prize of $ 100,000, rewards students who impacted learning, the lives of their peers and society beyond, according to ITV News.

Jeremiah told officials he plans to use the prize money to grow his startup to reach even more people. Its goal is 100,000 by 2030.

Like Jeremiah, the Sandpoint Lions Club is dedicated to making the world a better place, to improving the lives of those around them. In the case of Lions, this comes in the form of its various community programs such as its annual Christmas campaign, Toys for Tots.

Today’s generous donations total $ 975 and come from: Patricia Clayburn, $ 100; Paula and Ryan McGinty, $ 25; Jack and Janice DeBaun, $ 200; Steven and Debroah Crain, $ 200; Marguerite and Thomas Suttmeier, $ 250; Bruce and Sue Vogelsinger, $ 100; and Cravens Taxidermy, $ 100.

To date, the annual Christmas campaign has raised $ 8,023. This year’s Toys for Tots campaign goal is $ 50,000, the same as in previous years. Lions make the most of the money by doing good business and with the help of generous local businesses.

Registration forms are available at the Bonner Community Food Bank and at the Lions Den door at 609 S. Ella Avenue, right next to the caboose in Lakeview Park. They can also be downloaded from bit.ly/3x7md4o.

Registration began November 1 and ends December 17. Those completing the application are reminded to be sure to complete both pages and return their application promptly.

Like last year, the application form includes information for parents to itemize a wish list for each of their children as well as their favorite color and TV show or movie. This allows Lions to achieve as many wishes as they can.

Donations for toddler toys can be dropped off at the Bonner County Daily Bee reception, 310 Church St., 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday. You can also drop off your donations at the Columbia Bank branch at Sandpoint, 414 Church St., or at the Ponderay branch, 300 Bonner Mall Way; and at the Ponderay and Sandpoint Starbucks.

Donations can be mailed to Sandpoint Lions Club, Box 414, Sandpoint, ID 83864.

Donations by check are preferred. Be sure to include a note with your check that it is a Toys for Tots donation. If you would like to donate anonymously, please include a note.

If the donation is in someone’s name, be sure to include a note as well.

For further information: Sandpoint Lions Club, 208-263-4118


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