Berkshire High School Students Help Victims of “Sandy”

A high shool civics class project has ballooned into a relief effort for victims of “Sandy.
Seniors in a course on American government at Waconah Regional High School, in Dalton, Massachusetts had the idea to challenge their classmates to gather supplies for victims of Sandy. Perhaps they could even fill up an entire school bus and send it south. But momentum built though the week, and they’ve now arranged for two school-bus-loads, and are booking a third. 

“I’ve been doing everything, I’ve kind of been running around, moving bags, sorting. It’s crazy but it’s an awesome feeling.”

Senior Lilly Ka Lay Kie  was among a group of students sorting donations in a classroom, working their way through mounds of clothing, cleaning supplies, and one student’s contribution of eight large bags of dog food. 

The donations are heading to two locations in lower Brooklyn, and Staten Island, if they do work out that third bus.  Social studies teacher Jarred Shannon, whose class organized the effort, says the school has run charity drives before, but he’s hearing that fellow teachers are stunned by the outpouring of support prompted by Sandy.

“Kids bringing in all this stuff and donating so much of their own time, it brings tears to their eyes because they can see the amount of care that they have for other people that they don’t know.”

It’s personal for Calaycay, who moved to the Berkshires two years ago from New Jersey.

“I have friends and family who were directly affected by the hurricane. Some were out of power for two weeks.”

Twenty students and Shannon, will head out in a school bus caravan early Sunday morning.