HPA’s Kinders Launch Community Engagement Program Just In Time For Winter Weather

By Norma Richman

“We were gathering coats and sweaters for other kids to stay warm on cold days. Giving makes me feel happy.”

—Heather S. age 6

Jackets, sweaters, and even some charming dresses were collected by High Point’s Kindergarten classes throughout the month of December and stashed in decorated boxes for delivery to Families in Transition, a Pasadena Unified School District program that supplies clothing and other necessities for disadvantaged children.

Ryan M., Elaine D., Ethan C., Bryce G. stuff the gift box for Families in Transition

With this need in mind,  Kinder teachers Mrs. Wiebe, Mrs. Valenciano, and Ms. Okuno sent out the word, and within a few days they had two large boxes of winter wear ready to go. These gently-used or new items this year even included baby clothes. As they packed up their donations and readied them for delivery, students discussed what the impact of their generosity would mean to others. “When it’s cold, the kids who don’t have jackets and coats can have them. It made me feel cheerful,” said Constantina W-L., age 6.

Edison T., 6, added, “We outgrow them so then the other younger kids can use them, and we can keep re-using them and not throw them in the trash.”

Stella D., also age 6, summed up the sentiments of the season this way: “So now others have something warm to wear. It’s important to be kind.”

Donations were put to good use as soon as they were delivered;  FIT staffers Eric and Socorro noted that they were able to fulfill requests for their clients just as they were heading into the holiday break. One staff member remarked that High Point’s generosity meant that more children would be warm for the upcoming winter.

PUSD’s ‘FIT’ program provides resources and services to help students and families struggling with housing instability, food insecurity, lack of access to health and mental health services, recent immigration, and other challenges. The FIT offices are housed on the Madison Elementary School campus.

Families in Transition

Front: Meera H., Ava N., Constantina WL., Juan ID., William Z., Louis D., Heather S.  Back: Jasper L., Edison T., Stella D., Grayson D.

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