Valley Elementary School, along with the middle school and high school others within the community, have really stepped up to the plate this year. In a joint effort, all three schools held their own can food collections for the kids and families in need, for the holidays and even community members and groups have helped contribute to this wonderful project.
The students and teachers at Valley Elementary School have been collecting food and money for food, for the kids and families in the Valley School District. Valley Elementary Principal, Jeremy Clark said that when all is said and done, they will be sending out close to 100 big boxes full of food to the families in need during the holiday break.
Walking in the elementary school, the entire stage area was covered in food supplies that were donated by their student body and the elementary staff. Clark also stated that they had received donations of both food and money from people within the community.
There were cans and cans of food, which was mostly donated by the children there at the school. Along with this, there was so much peanut butter, boxes of food, like instant potatoes, pancakes & syrup, boxes of snacks such as granola bars, all which had either been donated by people, or had been purchased with the money collected.
Clark said that on the day they distribute these boxes, each family will receive a ham and loaf of bread. What will happen is, that the families will be contacted and be able to pick up their boxes and the ham on that same day.
Jeff Rase, the elementary guidance counselor, said that they started this in 2011 and it has grown tremendously since then. He said the kids first brought in cans and then, “the staff wanted to become involved and so they started bringing in food or money.” He said of this for the holidays, “It’s kinda like the perfect storm, to help carry the kids food through the holidays. I could not do this without all the volunteers coming in to help out filling the boxes.” At the high school, the National Honor Society works to fill theirs.
The goal now was to get all of this packed first. That alone, will take the volunteers all day. They had volunteers from the PTO and the community to help fill the boxes.
They evenly distribute the food in the boxes and with what ever pieces they have left, they put in their food pantry that they have there at the school, through the Steven A Hunter Hope Fund. Rase also said that Mark and Virgie Hunter, with the The Steven A Hunter Hope Fund, Inc., inspired them to give and help. “They inspire us and encourage us all year round with the summer food program and the Steven A. Hunter food backpack program.
Other contributions that they had received were from Brandon Hoyme and his “Cans for Christ” charity as they gave them 100 bags that contained some can food, mac-n cheese, snacks, toothbrush, etc. that were also to be placed in the boxes. Then, there was First Presbyterian Church of Portsmouth, donated a hygiene pack for the kids in the boxes. Rase was sure to add again that he so appreciated the volunteers who came in to help get this project ready for distribution.
It is reassuring to know that those kids who will need food over the holidays, due to school being out, will have plenty to carry them through and much of it is food products that they can fix for themselves. The Lucasville Schools and community have done a great job in making sure no one goes hungry during the holidays, what a great way for a community to come together and give to their own.
Reach Kimberly Jenkins 740-353-3101 ext. 1928
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