One thing’s for sure: Scots’ Angels has aided many more lives than “Charlie’s Angels” ever did (although Charlie’s are, of course, fictitious).
The David Douglas Scots’ Angels pay it forward. This club allows kids to help kids in medical crisis, as well as their families. It’s an offshoot of the Sparrow Clubs USA that began 12 years ago. Its business partners include DHL Global Forwarding and Providence Health and Services. In its 12 years, it’s raised more than $70,000. “Getting kids to be involved with projects that are bigger than themselves has been priceless,” explains Club Advisor Brad Joy, who got involved years ago through a class called Social and Human Services that is no longer offered. “About five years ago, we started our own club called the David Douglas Scots’ Angels, but the premise is the same. The biggest difference is we don’t have any administrative fees, so 100 percent of funds collected go directly to the family. We are 100 percent self-funded with the support of the David Douglas student body and the community.”
Each school year, the club chooses an “angel.” According to Joy, four former “angels” hail from the David Douglas School District.
The club collects money to fund the angel’s medical expenses; and in some cases—as was tragically demonstrated last month––the club funds funeral arrangements, too.
On Dec. 9, the 2017/2018 angel, Jasmine Mounsaveng, a sophomore at David Douglas High School, passed away from a rare brain disease called diffuse intrinsic pontine giloma (DIPG). According to the Michael Mosier Defeat DIPG Foundation, which seeks to find a cure for the disease, Jasmine’s prognosis was dim from the get-go. Its website states that “only 10 percent of children with DIPG survive for two years following their diagnosis, and less than one percent survive for five years. The median survival time is nine months from diagnosis.”
Jasmine died within a week of the club’s 2017/18 kickoff assembly.
“Unfortunately, Jasmine was too sick to attend,” says Dan McCue, the David Douglas communications director. “The students sent a check to the family for $2,000 for immediate costs. This money was raised Friday by the students, who dropped loose change into giving buckets as they exited the assembly.”
And donations won’t end there.
“We are continuing our fundraising until March,” says Joy. “Our goal is to raise $10,000 for the family to cover expenses related to Jasmine’s medical condition. We will present the check to the family on Mar. 9.”
Still, Jasmine’s unexpected passing has been a blow to the club, her family and friends and the community at large.
“I am very sad for Jasmine’s family and friends,” says Amber Cowgill, the club advisor and activity director. “Even with a terminal prognosis, it doesn’t make the passing any easier. I met Jasmine through my students. She was very close friends with my student council kids and a few of my cheerleaders that I coach. What I did know about Jasmine was that she was fun to be around, always joking, and [she] was a good friend to the friends that she was close to.”
Joy echoes Cowgill’s sentiments. He hadn’t met Jasmine until she was chosen as this year’s angel, but he has fond memories of her.
He claims she “had such courage. It inspired us all. Until the end, Jasmine chose to come to school and be part of the David Douglas family. We had a huge birthday party for her at the school a few weeks ago that was amazing. We paid for her and 14 of her friends to take a limo to dinner and a scavenger hunt around Portland. They then were introduced at our annual basketball game called ‘Night Out with the Scots.’ After the game, we had a party in our cafeteria with her friends and about 30 family members. It was fantastic!”
Angels are chosen each fall. Proceeds are collected through club initiatives, such as an ongoing raffle and the selling of ornaments manufactured in the school’s MakerSpace.
“When this effort is over, we will begin looking for the next child in need. Unfortunately, we don’t have to look very hard to find those in need,” adds Joy.
To learn more about Scots’ Angels or learn how to donate, visit their website at scotsangels.net or contact Brad Joy at 503-262-4433. Tickets for a raffle dedicated to raising money for Jasmine’s family are $1, and anyone can enter.