ANDERSON, Ind. —
For Christmas, some students at Anderson High School want to see others receive nice presents.
Students, both present and past, are actually working on a couple of different projects to help classmates in need receive gifts.
“I think that the holidays can be an emotional time of year for a lot of people and that they need someone to go out of their way to show they appreciate or think of them this time of year,” said Grerayle Walton, AHS principal’s assistant.
Walton organized a fundraising skate in which proceeds will go toward helping Anderson High School purchase uniforms for older students and toys for elementary kids for Christmas.
The event is Tuesday from 6 to 8 p.m. at Anderson’s Roll Arena, 2711 Broadway.
Senior Marc Andrews has been helping to market the event by speaking to businesses and passing out fliers, and wants people to see that there’s a positive side to the community.
He said he was raised to care about others and has participated in other community service events. What really opened his eyes, he said, was a trip to Alternatives Inc. when a group brought gifts to the children and he could see their eyes get big with the surprise.
“Seeing their smiles is a life-changing experience,” Andrews said. “The greatest thing in the world is to give to someone less fortunate than ourselves.”
Walton said a list of names of those struggling was put together; 107 children are on the list currently.
“Some kids have wish lists and are not able to get what they want or what they need,” Andrews said, adding the fundraiser is meant to help fulfill some of those wishes.
If the monetary goal isn’t reached, Walton said some of the students are on other lists, such as the Salvation Army’s or East Side Church of God’s.
The church is where Walton holds a youth group class and said he heard students talking about the needy and wishing they were provided for.
“What’s important to me is when younger kids see older kids doing stuff like this,” he said. “It inspires them.”
So he worked with Anderson’s Roll Arena to get the fundraiser going on AHS’ behalf.
He said a Trunk ‘R Treat at the rink during Halloween was successful and that it seemed a good route to go.
Hamilton Smith, sophomore executive council president, said the council wants to set a friendly environment at school, provide the community with a positive attitude and promote anti-bullying.
“In accordance with these ideas, we put together a secret Santa project,” he said.
The sophomore executive council will also be giving presents to classmates in need and developed the idea after one of the members talked about being close to some of the students and her mom working with them, Smith said.
He said they’ve done various fundraisers throughout the year, such as a Fazoli’s night in which proceeds were split 50-50 with the restaurant.
Smith added they don’t just want to give out the presents and be done. He said the council wants to form new friendships.
“We wanted to have a positive attitude, a one-on-one relationship with some of the kids so they know they have a friend there (at school),” he said.
Find Dani Palmer on Facebook and @DaniPalmer_THB on Twitter, or call 640-4847.
Anderson High School’s skating fundraiser
- What: A fundraiser to purchase gifts for Anderson Community Schools’ children in need
- Where: Anderson’s Roll Arena, 2711 Broadway
- When: Tuesday, Dec. 18, from 6 to 8 p.m.
Costs: $5 admission and $2.75 skate rental with door prizes