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Mt. Pleasant Church of God children share with the community

Cami DiBattista | For The Mt. Pleasant Journal - Michael Dedo, 8, of Mt. Pleasant adds a bag of items for those in need to Michelle Sechrist' s growing pile of donated goods. During the Mt. Pleasant Church of God's Vacation Bible School program, themed 'God's Backyard,' the children collected food and clothing to help those in the area who need the assistance. Photo taken Friday, July 19, 2013
<div style='float:right;width:100%;' align='right'><em>Cami DiBattista  |  For The Mt. Pleasant Journal</em></div>Michael Dedo, 8, of Mt. Pleasant adds a bag of items for those in need to Michelle Sechrist' s growing pile of donated goods. During the Mt. Pleasant Church of God's Vacation Bible School program, themed 'God's Backyard,'  the children collected food and clothing to help those in the area who need the assistance.  Photo taken Friday, July 19, 2013
Cami DiBattista | For The Mt. Pleasant Journal - Caden Sherbondy, 6, of Mt. Pleasant (foreground) and Garrett Eicher, 6, also of Mt. Pleasant, hand a 'goody bag' to Mt. Pleasant Borough volunteer firefighters Jim and Justin Garsteck, both of Mt. Pleasant. Children participating in the Mt. Pleasant Church of God's Vacation Bible School program created 65 such bags for the borough firefighters as a thank-you for all they do. Photo taken Friday, July 19, 2013
<div style='float:right;width:100%;' align='right'><em>Cami DiBattista  |  For The Mt. Pleasant Journal</em></div>Caden Sherbondy, 6, of Mt. Pleasant (foreground) and Garrett Eicher, 6, also of Mt. Pleasant, hand a 'goody bag' to Mt. Pleasant Borough volunteer firefighters Jim and Justin Garsteck, both of Mt. Pleasant. Children participating in the Mt. Pleasant Church of God's Vacation Bible School program created 65 such bags for the borough firefighters as a thank-you for all they do.  Photo taken Friday, July 19, 2013

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By Cami Dibattista
Wednesday, July 31, 2013, 9:00 p.m.
 

About 70 children recently gave back to the Mt. Pleasant area, during the Mt. Pleasasnt Church of God's annual Vacation Bible School program. This year's theme was “God's Backyard.”

“Part of the program was servicing those in our backyard — those who we see every day, such as friends and (other members of) the community,” said Chelsea Snyder, the program's director.

During the weeklong program, the children collected a large amount of non-perishable food and clothing to donate to those in need.

The children also created handmade scarves for the Salvation Army and presented “goody bags” to members of the Mt. Pleasant Borough Volunteer Fire Department to thank them for their service to the community.

“It was very thoughtful of them,” said Cory Snyder, a Mt. Pleasant Borough volunteer firefighter and borough resident. “They (the bags) will be much appreciated back at the station.”

Roughly 15 firefighters attended the program's finale on Friday at the church, which included entertainment provided by the children. In all, 65 bags were donated. Each contained a bottle of water, a personal note of thanks from a VBS participant, and treats such as Lifesavers, crackers and snack packs.

“I think it's great,” said Jim Garsteck, a borough firefighter and borough resident. “It's good for them to learn to help others.”

Hannah Foster, 6, of Ruffsdale said she enjoyed her time at Vacation Bible School. “It was fun,” said Foster, who added that she has attended the program in past years and plans to participate again next summer.

Michelle Sechrist, who runs the Mt. Pleasant Church of God's food pantry, helped with this year's program.

“The kids did such a great job,” Sechrist said. “They gave with a pure heart.”

Cami DiBattista is a contributing writer for Trib Total Media.

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