TSC students and staff are giving back to the community through various service projects during the holiday season. Some schools held food drives, collected items for animal shelters and baked cookies for homeless shelters, while others held fundraising events to benefit families in need. Here is a look at some of the activities involving our schools.
The National Junior Honor Society at Southwestern Middle School collected nearly 3,000 items during their holiday food drive. President Ellah Anderson says spirit week activities and a grade-level competition generated a lot of excitement for the program: “I hope that people learned that charity is an important part of life and it is always good to help those in need when given the opportunity.”
Mayflower Mill Elementary School conducted a donation drive to benefit school families. Students brought in toiletry and grocery items, as well as socks, hats and scarves. In total, the school collected more than 3,300 items that were donated to 25 families. Sponsor Taylor Butcher says delivering donations to our own Mayflower families adds a whole new element of community. “We are a school with many high needs. Combine that with the pandemic, and this year has been especially hard on our families,” says Butcher. “I hope our students learn how good it feels to help others, and I hope they are able to appreciate and be inspired by the needs right here at our own school."
Because the students at Woodland Elementary School exceeded their portion of a fundraising goal in a Christmas Assistance Program, Principal Lee Sweet and Assistant Principal Brock Richardson dressed up as turkeys and spent the day on the roof. By the end of the campaign, the school raised more than $12,000 for the program. Richardson says school volunteers went shopping to fill holiday wish lists for more than 60 students. “The gifts are made up of toys, various clothing items, coats, shoes, and even specified treats and other items,” says Richardson. “We also provide these families with wrapping paper, tape, and gift tags so they have the opportunity to see the gifts and wrap them as their own.”
Instead of exchanging gifts, second grade classes at Wea Ridge Elementary School chose to create blankets and collect gifts for animals at local shelters. Teacher Joanne Sprunger says the students made 40 blankets. “During the busy holiday season it is always nice to have young children learn about the true gift of giving,” says Sprunger. “Naturally kids love and want to help animals. A giving tree with gifts for the animals excites them to share what they have. It is my hope that children understand that they can make a difference and help others.”
A second and third grade high ability class at Hershey Elementary School celebrated the season by volunteering. Students signed up for a 20-minute time slot to ring the red kettle bell for the Salvation Army. They also collected items to donate to an animal shelter.
Third grade students at Mintonye Elementary School read articles and data about the needs in our community before collecting items for Lafayette Urban Ministry’s homeless shelter. Items included shampoo, toothpaste, toothbrushes, coloring books and gloves.
The Wainwright Honor Society and teachers donated nearly $700 for Wreaths Across America. The school participates in the program in honor of Wainwright Middle School and McCutcheon High School alumnus, Sergeant Kyle Osborn, who was killed in Afghanistan in September 2012. “The wreaths were placed on the graves at the Indiana Veterans Home,” says club sponsor Kathy Martin. “This is Wainwright's sixth year to participate and was double the number of wreaths we have ever been able to donate.”
Students in Chef Chad Young’s culinary classes at the Greater Lafayette Career Academy (GLCA) baked cookies and delivered them to local homeless shelters. The students made dozens of yellow butter crackle, chocolate chip, peanut butter blossoms and other tasty flavors. “GLCA is community driven and wants to stay connected” says Young. “My hope is that the students feel empowered by contributing their talents to doing good. Sharing knowledge and passion through giving is a very good feeling and probably the best way to use their skills.”