Food drive proves that kids can help

Phillip YatesGlenwood Springs, CO Colorado
Kara K. Pearson Post Independent

GLENWOOD SPRINGS – The weather outside was dreary and gloomy.But inside the Glenwood Springs Middle School gym during a school pep rally on Wednesday, the mood was anything but gloomy. Hundreds of kids were in the giving mood, celebrating the end of a competition among the school’s three classes that gave a local nonprofit hundreds of cans of food.”I feel happy that I am helping the community,” said Laura McDermott, 12, a sixth-grader who is on the school’s student council, which helped organize the food-drive competition.

In seven days of competing, the school was able to collect 988 cans.Cody Derby, 14, an eighth-grade student who is also a member of the school’s student council, said organizing the canned-food competition may have been a lot of work, but it was worth it.”It’s better giving than receiving,” Derby said. “It’s great to give to the community and those in need.”Beth Wysong, an eighth-grade language arts teacher at the school, said the eighth grade collected 517 cans; the seventh grade, 407 cans; and the sixth grade, 64 cans. The food will go to LIFT-UP, a charitable relief organization.”The students were all really excited about (the contest),” Wysong said.The winners’ award? Extra recess time.

cans: 2″I heard that some of the eighth graders were texting one another the night before the (contest) ended,” Wysong said. “They were texting one another to bring in cans and reminding each other (about the competition).”When the announcement was made about which grade came in first, the eighth-graders erupted, Wysong said.”I could hear cheering through the walls when the eighth grade won,” Wysong said.Emily Bartlomiejczuk, 13, an eighth-grade student, said during the pep rally that it was a great feeling to give, but it was also pretty nice that her grade will receive extra recess time.”I was really surprised so many people wanted to give cans,” Bartlomiejczuk said.

At Crystal River Elementary School in Carbondale, fourth-grade students Leah Allen and Morgan White prodded students to give. In just 24 hours, the school collected 510 cans, said Penny McDill, an assistant principal at the school.”The thing that was impressed me was that children came up with the idea,” McDill said. “They got themselves organized to do it.”The food was delivered to Catholic Charities on Wednesday, and it was a special moment for everyone who was there, McDill said. One man who was there even had tears in his eyes.”Christmas was alive and well,” McDill said. “We were so proud of our kids.”Contact Phillip Yates: 384-9117pyates@postindependent.comPost Independent, Glenwood Springs, Colorado CO

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