Schools encourage the spirit of giving
Berkeley Springs High School teacher Ron Bittinger’s classes collected enough donated items to fill 13 shoeboxes for Operation Christmas Child. The program benefits needy children around the world.
Donations could be school supplies like pencils, crayons, books and paper, personal hygiene products such as toothpaste, toothbrushes or soap or things like socks, shirts or toys, Bittinger said.
His students could donate items they owned or things that they purchased themselves to give away. Participation in the drive was voluntary.
His economics class took $100 from their t-shirt business profits and bought items to donate. Another $90 was donated for shipping costs for the shoeboxes.
Bittinger said he encouraged students to participate, telling them that the joy of giving is one of the greatest feelings that people can experience. He also stressed the importance of giving to those who are less fortunate.
Greenwood Elementary is collecting Christmas cards for a 4-year-old cancer patient in Fayetteville as a holiday project, said Principal Barbara Whisner.
Whisner noted that they encourage children to be thankful for what they received last year in their letters to Santa and to also ask for gifts for family members. Classes discuss different holiday traditions and emphasize the spirit of giving, she said.
Widmyer Elementary students will be collecting canned food items from now until December 16, Assistant Principal Ginny Molnar said. Their food drive last year collected nearly 3,000 canned goods for needy families in the school. Those donations fed 30 families for the holidays. The rest of the food went to McEAT.
At Pleasant View Elementary, staff is collecting money amongst themselves to give to the local food bank and for other necessities for families, said Principal Nicole Fox.
Every Morgan County School is participating in the Holiday Helpers program that assists local families with food and clothing in the holiday season. School staff, businesses, churches and others adopt needy families through the program.
Some 210 families have received aid through Holiday Helpers, said Morgan County Starting Points Director Audrey Morris.