‘Heavy lifting’ for Salvation ArmyPublished 12:01am Wednesday, March 23, 2011
BUCHANAN — Members of Buchanan High School Students Against Destructive Decisions (SADD) did some heavy lifting Tuesday afternoon following a successful food drive to help feed the hungry.
Buchanan SADD joined forces with the Niles High School SADD to collect food items and monetary donations to benefit the Niles-Buchanan Salvation Army.
Niles recently completed its drive, surpassing its goal to collect 1,000 items in one week. Buchanan High School followed suit and its strategy was to start at the top.
“We had a war of the classes that included the teachers too,” said teacher and SADD adviser Steve Young. “Teachers were able to bring in items in exchange for jean days. Teachers themselves brought in more than 300 items.”
In a combined estimate of food items and monetary donations to purchase more canned goods, Young says the school raised more than 2,300 items.
“It was a good collective effort by our school,” he said. “We’ve done food drives but this is the best it’s gone. We knew if the teachers got excited about it then the kids would be.”
Students helped carry and load all of the donations into a truck bound for The Salvation Army food pantry.
The food drive, scheduled by both SADD groups to help fill the organization’s pantry in what is normally a very needy time, as most of their resources are exhausted after the holidays, is one Young hopes to make an annual event.
After seeing Niles High School’s incentives to its students, which resulted in a few teachers with pie on their faces and Principal Jim Knoll puckering up to a pig during a special assembly on Friday, Young said he’s giving administrators fair warning.
“I’ve already warned the principals,” he said. “We’re going to be setting goals.”
Another element that turned the tide in the food drive was a special video that highlighted The Salvation Army’s backpack program. Young said he reminded students they had “classmates, neighbors, cousins, brothers and sisters” who had utilized that program, and encouraged them to give back.
“We definitely did well as a school,” he said.