ELGIN – Following an enthusiastic response to fundraising and supply collection efforts for those impacted by Hurricane Harvey and Hurricane Irma, students and staff across School District U-46 have now turned their attention to the people reeling from natural disasters in Puerto Rico and Mexico.
“We’ve seen overwhelming generosity from U-46 students, their families and our staff in responding to the needs of those in Texas and Florida,” said School District Chief Executive Officer Tony Sanders. “Now we are seeing the same spirit of giving aimed at those struggling in Mexico and Puerto Rico, where many in our District have family and friends.”
Some of the efforts underway in the District include:
- The student council at Oakhill Elementary in Streamwood organized a “Penny Wars” effort in which families sent in spare coins from home. The total raised was $1,234.
- Century Oaks Elementary in Elgin organized a “Shining a Light on Empathy” campaign in which students and staff have been encouraged to bring in new and unopened batteries and flashlights as well as monetary donations by Friday, Oct. 6.
- In return for a $1 a day donation, students at the Dream Academy have been able to wear jeans for the week of Oct. 2-6. This is an opportunity for students to be out of the school’s dress code for the week while contributing to a good cause.
- Employees based in the District’s Educational Services Building hosted a “Jean Day” on Friday, Sept. 29. In return for a $5 donation, employees could dress casual in their jeans for the day, and staff members were welcome to donate even if they weren’t denim lovers. A total of $738 was raised.
- Otter Creek Elementary in Elgin is hosting a “Coin Challenge” this week. Students were encouraged to bring in pennies on Monday, nickels on Tuesday, dimes on Wednesday, quarters on Thursday and “anything goes” on Friday. The two classes with the highest total of money raised will win an ice cream party.
- On Thursday, Oct. 5, central office staff will host a bake sale, featuring international items, from 7 a.m. to 11 a.m. for staff. Batteries and flashlights are also being collected to send to Puerto Rico.
The latest money raised will be split between The Puertan Rican Agenda, which is aiding those affected by Hurricane Maria in late September in Puerto Rico, and Chicago con Mexico, an organization supporting rebuilding efforts in Mexico following two earthquakes there, including a magnitude 7.1 quake on Sept. 19 that killed more than 330 people.
Those natural disasters in Mexico and Puerto Rico followed closely after areas in Florida, Texas and the Caribbean were hit hard by Hurricane Harvey and Hurricane Irma earlier in the month. Students and staff at 13 School District U-46 schools raised more than $9,000 in funds and gathered supplies to help provide relief to those impacted communities.
Bartlett, Hawk Hollow, Hillcrest, Hilltop, Spring Trail, Ronald D. O’Neal, Clinton, Oakhill and Liberty elementary schools as well as Kenyon Woods and Larsen middle schools, Larkin and Streamwood high schools participated in a variety of fundraising efforts, from hosting a “Penny War” and a “Dollar Drive” to collecting school supplies, packing food and purchasing new books for a Houston-area school’s flooded library.
The funds raised are being donated to organizations such as the American Red Cross, C.E. King High School in Houston, the Autism Society of Texas’ Hurricane Harvey Disaster Fund, Salvation Army and Feed My Starving Children.