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Clothing Drive Helps Those in Need

Wednesday, January 30, 2019

Back in December, our Middle School Student Leadership Team organized a clothing drive for St. Anthony's, a local non-profit organization that provides food, clothing, and medical services to people experiencing homelessness. It was a great opportunity for the CDS community to help their fellow citizens of San Francisco, and our families came through with many generous donations. The project's organizer was eighth grader Lily Holland, and we asked her to share more about what inspired her to take action:

This past summer in San Francisco, I saw an older homeless man outside the grocery store. My mom gave me some money to give to him so I went over and introduced myself.  He said his name was Roy and he thanked me for the money I gave him. I wanted to understand how Roy became homeless so I asked him some questions. Roy told me that he’s 76 years old and has been homeless for 4 or 5 years (he wasn’t sure exactly). I learned that Roy rides BART in the winter to stay warm and dry if he has some money. He goes to Goodwill for prescription eyeglasses because they have a bin of used ones he can choose from and he can usually find a pair that will work for his eyes. 

Talking to Roy and understanding how he struggles for things like clothing and food influenced me to find ways to help the homeless. My family has been donating clothing that we’ve outgrown to St. Anthony’s for years so a couple weeks later I went there with my mom and asked how I could learn more about the clothing program. The clothing director gave us a tour of the program and said they love it when students come to them to set up clothing drives. When summer was over and I started 8th grade, I asked CDS for permission to hold a clothing drive. I was very excited about being able to help the homeless. I also was nervous about managing my time and if the number of donations I would receive would be sufficient. I coordinated with St. Anthony’s to have donation barrels dropped at school, spread awareness about the drive by making fliers, and made announcements at school assemblies to try to get my community involved. At the end of the drive, the barrels had been filled to the top more than five times and all the donations were taken directly to St. Anthony’s.