Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Silver for Santa Makes Holidays Brighter for J.C. Booth Families

Students at J.C. Booth Middle have captured the true spirit of the holiday season.

About 10 years ago the school started a fundraiser to help their own families who were struggling financially have a more memorable holiday. It has operated under several different names throughout the years but is now called Silver for Santa, with the word “silver” representing the spirit of giving.

Students are asked to consider donating whatever amount they feel is appropriate. The money collected is used to pay for practical items like rent, eyeglasses or doctor visits for students.
“And sometimes we just buy a bicycle because it’s what needs to be done,” says school guidance counselor Lynda Manwaring.

Manwaring did not disclose the goal for the fundraiser, saying that a goal was set only to have a ceiling, but the project raised more money than ever topping out at over $6,600.

“This has been the most successful endeavor we have ever undertaken but the definitive monetary amount is really irrelevant. It is the loving, generous spirit of our students and families that makes this project special,” says Manwaring.

While students throughout the school have stepped up to help their own, one class in particular has been leading the way. Dave Edinger’s eighth grade homeroom collected over $1,000, the most of any classroom at the school. Although Manwaring admits that Edinger has been a motivating force, she says it is the students who answered the call and stepped outside of themselves to help others.

“Our students are so very generous with what they have been given and they often put others first. Our youth are truly wonderful, young adults,” she says.

Silver for Santa came about because the school saw a need for families who were struggling to pay bills and send their children to school, leaving little money left for anything else.

“Our desire is, and continues to be, to celebrate the spirit of the season by making memories better for others,” Manwaring says.

The fundraiser takes place over a 10-day period.

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