HHS shines bright with RAD event this month

RAD shines the light on people who have persevered and celebrated themselves and their abilities!


L. Martil

One of the many things taking place at the RAD event.

By Anushka Pandya

On Wednesday, Oct. 26, Huntley High School’s RAD held their “Keep Shining – The World Needs Your Light” in celebrating abilities and inclusivity.

The event did just that by giving people a platform to perform their talents throughout the night and talk about the struggles they faced trying to accomplish their goals. The event held different booths with dogs, a raffle, photo booth, cookies, books, and much more.

“We want everyone to be included and show how much acceptance for all abilities and how much all abilities have to offer us,” RAD teacher-committee member Renee Fowler said.

The table with support animals was from Canines 4 Comfort; their table was surrounded with five to seven dogs, all playing around and interacting with students and people who came over.

“[Canines 4 Comfort is]A non-profit that trains and places animals service dogs, emotional support animals, and trained facility dogs with individuals that have functional challenges and opportunities,” cofounder Lisa Wernli said.

One of the first performances was Kingpins. The group is a platform for people with special needs to be able to enjoy performing and have fun drumming; something they normally would not be able to do without the help of something like Kingpins.

“My younger son and I would go and watch parades and performances regularly and felt, why not find something that would accommodate this population as well. So I asked the director if they would be open and willing to try and they said yes,” director Angela Krambeer said.

They performed many songs with the group where the members were all drumming to the melody made off of the music.

Two cheerleading performances were held, one from our own Huntley High School Poms Team, and the other being the Sparkle Squad, and both had unique and fun routines. The Poms Team even taught the Sparkle Squad some parts of a routine.

One of the most impactful performances was a speech from Breanna Boguki, a special services aide at HHS. She talked about her experience growing up with autism and having to navigate dealing with it in and out of school. She was diagnosed at age three with sensory issues and has dealt with it her whole life.

“If I never got the help that I needed, I would not be standing in front of you all today, speaking. I had severe sensory issues, my hearing was very heightened. Fire drills bothered me, basketball buzzer bothered me. My siblings would go play basketball and I would be covering my ears in the corner before the buzzer went off,” Boguki said.

Her 15 minute presentation was a look into someone’s life, describing things most people would never experience in their lifetime.

With months of planning and hard work from more than just the teachers who started organizing and the students of RAD, this event brought awareness and a fun filled night for many, with amazing performances, entertainment and fun activities.

“Everything that we have here is about celebrating inclusivity and celebrating the abilities. Those groups and businesses who support our students in their abilities and inclusivity,” RAD teacher-committee member Shannon Phillips said.

“It’s just a whole different world of phrases and programs that we aren’t exposed to in the regular ‘ed’ world,” Philips said.

Shannon Philips, Renee Fowler and Lacey Vitale Collins were in charge of the event and worked really hard to make it fun and enjoyable for everyone. If you see any of them, make sure to give them a thank you for their hard work!