Pictured are Western Wayne students from left: Sofie Fiorella, Ava Fiorella, Aliya Fiorella, Andrew Race, Peter Race, Anna Race, Lillian Maros, Lizzie Washine, Jayla Fiorella, and Natalie Race.
The Western Wayne School District worked to help families in their district in need this holiday season. Many people worked to make this operation a success.
School Board President Mrs. Bernice Fiorella reached out to local partners in search of food. An anonymous donor generously gave the district 150 Christmas dinners. Mr. Harry Howell organized food pick up. The American Legion were the ones to work to transport the food items to three locations: the Western Wayne Middle School, Evergreen Elementary School, and Ladore Lodge in Waymart. Also, Dave’s Super Duper helped get additional food for the families. In addition, the Hamlin Rotary donated blue bags for the items to be put in.
Many food items were put together for families including: ham, potatoes, pie, vegetables, peanut butter, jelly, bread, butter, cereal, mac and cheese, stuffing, danish donated by the Western Wayne food service department, and even candy canes.
Food baskets were packed by a small army of volunteers who ranged in age from 1st grade to retirement. The baskets went to all corners of the district with most being picked up by families and some delivered by Western Wayne School Resource Officers.
In addition, the Western Wayne School community had their annual Operation Elf effort in which faculty and staff made donations to help get gifts for families in the district in need. Close to 1,000 dollars was raised through Operation Elf. The Western Wayne guidance departments lead the charge of getting gifts for some of Western Wayne students through the help of staff and community members. The majority of the gifts were donated by community members, faculty, and staff.
Some of the money gathered through Operation Elf also went towards the efforts to get food for families in the district community.
Some Western Wayne students worked to help pack the donated food items for families. They included: Sofie Fiorella, Ava Fiorella, Aliya Fiorella, Andrew Race, Peter Race, Anna Race, Lillian Maros, Lizzie Washine, Jayla Fiorella, and Natalie Race.
All the students involved really enjoyed their experience.
“I really liked packing the food,” Western Wayne 7th grader Peter Race, who plays basketball and cross county, said. “I think Western Wayne is a great school that helps those in need.”
His fellow classmate agrees.
“My favorite part about volunteer work is knowing that I was able to help out in the community and make a difference in people’s lives,” Western Wayne 8th grader Aliya Fiorella, who participates in track, basketball, cross country, and student council, said.
Aliya’s friend Western Wayne 8th grader Lillian Maros, president of the Middle School student council, also was happy to make a difference.
“My favorite part about volunteer work is knowing what it’s for. It’s knowing that there are people out there who don’t have as much as us, and we can help them. God put us on this earth to help others, and knowing that I can do my part to make someone’s day a little brighter, is truly amazing,” Lillian said.
All community members, faculty, staff, and students involved in these efforts to help get food and gifts to Western Wayne families in need feel grateful to have the chance to make the holidays for their fellow Wildcats a little brighter.
“My favorite part about being a Wildcat is helping give back to my school,” Western Wayne 8th grader Lizzie Washine, cheerleader of the WWJH cheerleading squad and vice president of the Middle School student council, said. “A true Wildcat doesn’t just get knowledge from their school, they give back to it as well.”