Champion High School Students Operate Holiday Food Drive for the Needy
Some of the most important lessons students learn by doing and at Champion High School, community service learning is a graduation requirement. This year, a group of seniors in Bill Baran’s Civic Engagement course decided to launch a holiday food drive for the needy. From now until the end of the year, the students are collecting food items and donations to benefit the food pantry at the David Jon Louison Center, an emergency shelter for women and children located a few blocks from the school in downtown Brockton.
“This project has been extremely rewarding for the students. They truly are pleased to be able to help those less fortunate than they are, especially at the holiday season,” Baran said.
For 19-year-old Edlene Brito, the project is personal: when she and her young son needed help, a local shelter gave them a place to stay and food to eat. Now on her feet and planning to attend college after graduation in January, Edlene wants to pay that kindness back – and then some.
“A lot of people helped me when I needed it, and I want to turn around and help other people,” she said. “I want to show other people that there are people out there who want them to succeed, who will do what they can to give them a hand.”
The Champion High School students have collected cans and food stuffs at the Warren Avenue schoolhouse and reached out to other Brockton Public Schools; currently, they are collecting donations at the Baker, George and Downey Schools, at Ashfield Middle Schools and at the Plouffe Academy. The BB Russell Alternative School, Pathways Center and Boys and Girls Club are also hosting donation boxes.
In addition, the students have harnessed their creativity and created an “End Hunger” t-shirt that they are selling for $10 each. The logo was designed by class member Devontay Gierbolini and the shirts are being produced through the Wonder Tees vocational program at the school.
“There are hungry kids and families who need help in Brockton, and it makes us feel good that we can make a difference,” Devontay said.