Last updateWed, 18 Oct 2017 10am


Kids work to aid Katrina's victims

Campbell Crowley, 6, serves lemonade at a fund-raiser held by Loyola students last week to aid victims of Hurricane Katrina. The children raised $629.

Local children and teens jumped to the aid of victims of Hurricane Katrina last week, devising fund-raising schemes, making blankets and collecting necessities.

Local elementary schools organized sales of baked goods and lemonade. One even undertook to "recycle for relief."

Administrators of the Mountain View-Los Altos Union High School District quickly organized a districtwide fund-raiser for employees, enabling them to donate at their school or by payroll deduction.

Superintendent Rich Fischer said the district would welcome any students displaced by Hurricane Katrina, whether they are staying with relatives or in a local shelter, if one should be established in the area.

"We have been in contact with the Red Cross so that we can be ready if we need to help," Fischer said last week. "Each school is also carrying on fund-raising activities and other activities to show their support."

Los Altos High School students held a weeklong fund-raiser with a goal of $2,500. They collected coins and cash donations, sold pot stickers and planned to collect school supplies. They collected more than $1,000 by Tuesday. They will funnel their aid through the American Red Cross.

Mountain View High School students raised $2,100 in two days to send to the Red Cross and the Kiwanis Disaster Relief Fund. They then began a drive to collect school supplies to send to displaced students in Houston.

Alta Vista High School students also planned aid efforts.

At their annual back-to-school picnic last Friday, Oak Avenue School families brought cans, plastic and glass bottles to be recycled for cash. The children also brought in baggies of change to donate to the Red Cross. Second-grade teacher Roberta Pyne's students made posters to encourage families to donate and recycle. Third-graders have been collecting health kits for victims.

"I hope this is the kickoff, and we can do this once a month," Pyne said.

Students plan other fund-raising projects as well - picking up the hundreds of empty water bottles after the annual walkathon, making cards of their artwork and selling them to the community and monthly volunteer service projects.

"Ultimately, my goal is to educate our students and our community on how recycling can help us and also help the victims of Hurricane Katrina," Pyne said.

The school plans to continue aid efforts through the year.

Santa Rita Elementary School planned a three-pronged approach, Principal Steve Peck said last week. Students immediately donated to their choice of several venues. Next, they plan a "no frills" back-to-school picnic for Sept. 22, with a bake sale and collections for the Red Cross.

"The money will be going to hurricane victims rather than toward our own entertainment," Peck said.

The third prong is a long-term project: The adoption of a school outside New Orleans. Peck said Santa Rita's relief efforts will continue all year.

Students of Springer Elementary held a bake sale on back-to-school night and raised $1,000. In addition, parents and teachers contributed $3,600. Principal Bob Celeste was able to send the Red Cross checks totaling more than $5,000 this week.

Springer students also collected eight boxes of children's books and five boxes of markers, crayons, pads and paper. The boxes were shipped to a friend of the Springer community in Houston, who plans to deliver them to the Astrodome.

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