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September 21, 2018

Hundreds Benefit from Oswego School District Holiday Giving Project


OSWEGO, NY – Once again the holiday season means Oswego City School District nurses shifting into high gear to organize holiday giving projects to assist community families and children who might need some additional help to brighten the season.

Once again the KPS Spell-a-thon created a substantial amount of money to purchase gifts for youngsters. Each fifth grader had $25 to spend on a child as the students shopped at Walmart to seek out that special gift which would brighten the holiday for a local child. Jared Gardner and Jake Chetney show off some of the toys they purchased.

Once again the KPS Spell-a-thon created a substantial amount of money to purchase gifts for youngsters. Each fifth grader had $25 to spend on a child as the students shopped at Walmart to seek out that special gift which would brighten the holiday for a local child. Jared Gardner and Jake Chetney show off some of the toys they purchased.

Annually the nurses organize this Christmas project and through generous assistance from businesses, fraternal organizations, not-for profits and individuals hundreds of children and families had a might happier Christmas with either a fully meal or gifts of clothes and toys.

Ann Powell, the Minetto Elementary School nurse, noted, “This year the Minetto Holiday Drive was able to assist 37 families.”

Generous donations were received from Our Lady of Perpetual Help Catholic Church, Minetto United Methodist Church, People Against Poverty, Walmart, and the Children’s Board of Oswego Inc., Entergy, Oswego Elks Ladies Auxiliary #271, Minetto Historical Society, Minetto Student Council as well as Minetto Elementary students, faculty and staff.

Powell said, “We would like to thank everyone for their thoughtful and generous gifts.”

Charles E Riley Elementary School teamed up to assist 32 families with their Christmas Giving Project.

School Nurse Eileen Robinson said, “This year each student and younger siblings received at least two full outfits and two toys each. The family also received a food basket full of staples and a large turkey.”

At CER financial, food and gift assistance came from faculty and staff members, Entergy, Oswego City Police, People Against Poverty, the Lady Elks, Walmart, Ron and Sue Richards, Compass Federal Credit Union, and Riley families.

Robinson said, “Seventy children were recipients of the generosity of Riley School and our Oswego community. A big thank you goes out to the Christmas Project Committee who in one way or another these18 faculty and staff members helped make this year’s project a roaring success!”

KPS School Nurse Sarah Miller and volunteer Rich Yule hold one of the many presents that were distributed as part of the holiday giving program.

KPS School Nurse Sarah Miller and volunteer Rich Yule hold one of the many presents that were distributed as part of the holiday giving program.

Kingsford Park Elementary School once again rallied around the holiday effort.

School Nurse Sarah Miller said, “We were able to help 39 families this year. We lost our two organizers from last year due to transfer of position and retirement so it was a big undertaking for two newbies! Laurie Yule is our art teacher and really did most of the work, she was super.”

Continuing she said, “The students here raised quite a bit of money through their spelling bee donations and the generous donations throughout the community helped tremendously as well. The faculty and staff chose the names from our giving tree and were able to assist those families with gifts totaling approximately 115 children. Entergy was also a big supporter donating for five families.”

Miller explained, “Families came to the school and picked up their holiday food and gift packages as Richard Yule (Laurie’s husband) and Eileen Ensworth (KPS social worker) were good little helper elves for me helping to assist with bringing the donations outside and loading up cars.”

Fitzhugh Park Elementary School nurse Karyn Kirwan said, “Our ‘Christmas Care and Share’ project went amazing this year! Allison Adkins, a home and school parent, organized the project. She had a lot of help from parents of the FPS children.”

Very generous donations were received from Novelis, Entergy, Constellation, NRG , Eagle Beverage, YMCA, JC Penney, Oswego City Education Center, Newman Center People for Poverty, Century 21, Thirty-One, Oswego Aldi’s, Compass Credit Union,  AOH of Oswego, LAOH of Oswego, Lake City Police Department, SUNY Oswego ODK, Oswego Walmart, FPS faculty and staff and many anonymous donors.

 Fitzhugh Park staff members Scott Sweeting, Jeff Chetney, Karyn Kirwan (nurse), Allison Adkins (parent) and Principal Donna Simmons are surrounded by boxes there were being sent to homes throughout the school area for the holiday families.

Fitzhugh Park staff members Scott Sweeting, Jeff Chetney, Karyn Kirwan (nurse), Allison Adkins (parent) and Principal Donna Simmons are surrounded by boxes there were being sent to homes throughout the school area for the holiday families.

Kirwin said, “We were very fortunate to have the YMCA of Oswego and George Guilds of Eagle Beverage help deliver to family homes. We helped 48 families and 132 children. They received clothing and toys for Christmas. We also were able to provide them with a turkey, all the fixings for Christmas dinner and stock their pantries with food for a week.”

The nurse’s office at Oswego High School was packed with food, clothes and other holiday items.

School nurse Aimee DeVinny said, “It was an amazing effort at OHS. The generosity of our students, faculty and staff was simply amazing. We received generous donations from a variety of area businesses and organizations. We were able to provide 30 complete Christmas dinners, as well as 68 hoodies as Valti Graphics gave us a great deal to help our students.”

Among the many other items were 100 $30 Walmart gift cards, 20 $10 movie theatre gift cards and  10 $10 cards for Subway and 20 turkeys from Novelis.

Financial contributions came from the Oswego High School students, staff and faculty, Entergy, the Poverty Committee, Hibernian’s, the Children’s Board as well as Walmart.

The Oswego Middle School was able to organize dinners for 15 families and gift certificates for 100 students.

Among those donating to the holiday giving effort were Entergy, Compass Federal Credit Union, Walmart, the Oswego City Police Department, People Against Poverty and the Children’s Board of Oswego.

Much like the other six schools in the Oswego City School District, the Frederick Leighton Elementary School rallied around the students and families who needed to have a brighter holiday season and received generous support from a variety of organizations, businesses, students, faculty and staff members.

The annual holiday giving project throughout the Oswego City School District has become a tradition.

Schools serve the educational needs of children every day and assist in providing a safe and secure environment.

However, when the holiday season arrives the Oswego school community receives tremendous support in assisting to make Christmas a little more memorable for families who might need a bit of assistance this time of year.

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