OAHS student and staff hearts go out to Haiti
The Helping Hands Community Service Club at Oxford Area High School held a “Hearts for Haiti” fundraiser during the week following the 7.0 magnitude earthquake of January 14. Each homeroom was asked to contribute $1 per student, but the overwhelming majority of donations were made through change collections held during lunch periods.
With over $1,400 raised during the week, Helping Hands decided to donate all funds to an orphanage for girls in the town of Coq Chante which was destroyed in the earthquake. The orphanage is operated by the White Stone Church in Knoxville, Tennessee, which has several sister churches in southeastern Pennsylvania.
“One hundred percent of the funds will go to the orphanage, which was completely destroyed,” said Helping Hands faculty advisor Basia Manniso. “Seventeen girls survived, but the youngest, a four-year old, was killed.”
Helping Hands also contacted local businesses to request additional donations or to match the funds raised by the students and staff. Howett’s Screen Printing of Oxford contributed $100 and Herr Foods pledged to match the student funds.
The fundraiser was the idea of junior Mackenzie Haight after the earthquake and the nation of Haiti were discussed in her honors MICE (Modern Issues in Civics and Economics) class. At Miss Manniso’s suggestion, the 50-member Helping Hands club, which performs community service projects in the Oxford area throughout the school year, was enlisted to sponsor the project.