During the holidays, many Penn-Delco School District students found it can often be more rewarding to give than to receive. Across the district, each school did something to make a difference for others, while teaching students the importance of being kind and giving back.
At Coebourn Elementary, students and staff started in November raising money for the Red Cross to help victims of Hurricane Sandy. A $1 donation bought a ribbon that students and staff wore to show support. They also put boxes of toys together for Operation Christmas Child, a program that sends boxes to children in more than 100 war-torn and Third World countries.
Students also sent letters to the military throughout the holiday season and will soon start a mitten tree, to be donated to the Home of the Sparrow, an organization that provides temporary housing for women in need.
Students and staff at Aston Elementary started December by announcing the word of the month: Caring. The Aston safeties are currently holding a food drive for non-perishables for the Citizens Advisory Committee of Delaware County Children and Youth Services. Their goal is to fill 10 boxes to be delivered to needy families. Second graders set up a “Warmth Tree” in the lobby for students to decorate with hats, gloves, scarves and mittens, and the Student Council is collecting toys for less fortunate children. The toys and the “Warmth Tree” items are handed to children on Christmas Eve.
Pennell Elementary wrapped up its canned food drive, collecting over 750 non-perishable food items and continued its Toys for Tots collection through mid-December. The new toys are delivered to needy families by the U.S. Marines. Pennell also sold winter-themed lollipops to support people affected by Hurricane Sandy. The effort is called Candy for Sandy!
Parkside Elementary and its Student Council collected canned goods during their fall food drive for CityTeam Ministries. This year, CityTeam expects to help at least 900 families. Parkside students and staff hosted a bake sale to benefit the Red Cross for Hurricane Sandy victims and will host a second bake sale to raise funds to purchase grocery gift cards for Parkside families. It also participated in a “Toys for Tots” drive.
In addition to a canned food drive and turkey donation, the Northley Middle School Student Council partnered with the Northley Navigators and National Junior Honor Society (NJHS) to prepare Thanksgiving food baskets for 15 families of Northley students. The students also provided additional baskets for families at Christmas and NJHS will hold fundraisers to supplement the cost of the food.
A “Giving Tree” was also set up in the faculty lounge for staff to randomly select a tag from the tree and shop for the individual listed. Northley students pitched in with wrapping to prepare gifts for the Northley Navigators to deliver.
Students and staff at Sun Valley High School held their annual pie-throwing fundraiser that helped raise money for Thanksgiving dinner for families in the district. Students collected money as staff lined up to receive a pie to the face. The more pies thrown, the more money collected. Also at Sun Valley, the JROTC collected toys for Toys for Tots.
The Vanguard Volunteers, FCCLA and CARING have adopted three platoons in Afghanistan until they come home next April. Students sent cards weekly and a package at least once a month and prepared extra care packages to send to troops for the holidays.