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Dunbar Township Elementary students repeat holiday food drive

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Marilyn Forbes | For the Daily Courier
Getting a jump on their food collection are Dunbar Township Elementary School students (front, left) Maggie Schwartz, Kai Vielma, William Schwartz, and Avery Lape; (back) Jalynn Shultz and Grant Snyder.

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Wednesday, Oct. 23, 2013, 6:03 p.m.
 

Dunbar Township Elementary School students have kicked off their annual holiday food drive.

Launched by the school's PTO, the food drive is in its second year .

“We collected enough food to fill three pallets,” PTO Treasurer Amanda Vielma said of the 2012 drive. “It was really an amazing response, and we were really happy with all the support the kids received.”

The drive will be held in the school through Nov. 8. Students are asked to donate nonperishable food.

“We sent home fliers with all the students explaining about the drive,” PTO President Jennifer Lape said. “This is a way that they can help with Thanksgiving dinner for people who are local.”

The food donations from the drive will be given to the Connellsville Community Ministries, which will use it for emergency purposes and supplement the food that is given the local pantry from Fayette County Community Action.

“We are always very grateful for any food donations,” Connellsville Community Ministries Director Chip Rowan said. “Our need is great and anything that comes in is appreciated.”

Rowan said he is pleased to see children of young ages taking an interest in the community and in those in need.

“I think that it's wonderful that they already have the initiative to help their neighbors out,” Rowan said. “It's wonderful to see them concerned for other people.”

Dunbar Township Elementary School Principal Geoffrey Snyder said he is proud of the students and their desire to reach out to those around them who may be struggling.

“I think that it's a great thing that the students want to help the community,” Snyder said. “I think this helps them to be a little more caring and a little more compassionate.”

About 600 students in kindergarten through sixth grade attend Dunbar Township Elementary School. All students can participate in the food drive.

A listing of the suggested items most in need was given to each child as a guide.

“The homeroom that collects the most food will be treated to a pizza party,” Vielma said. “It's just a little extra incentive and a nice way to reward them.”

Vielma said that Connellsville Community Ministries was grateful for the donations last year and is appreciative that the school will have another holiday food drive, helping to make the upcoming holidays a little less stressful for those who need a helping hand.

“I think it's nice,” student Avery Lape, 5, said of the drive. “It's nice because we are helping people.”

The community can take part in the food drive. Non-perishable items can be dropped off at Dunbar Township Elementary School's offices.

Marilyn Forbes is a contributing writer.

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