“Toys for Wildcats” drive organizer Barb Miller said she is truly in need of gifts for all ages this year.
“Donations are slightly down, and need is slightly up,” Miller said.
To help, the annual “Fill the Bus” event as part of Northwestern School District’s holiday drive was held Saturday, Dec. 3, in the parking lot of the Albion Dollar General, 10541 Route 6N.
A Northwestern school bus was parked outside Dollar General all morning, and students, faculty and staff collected donations attempting to fill the entire bus.
All items collected during drive are given back to families within the district. Last year 121 families were helped.
“As a teacher, I am a firm believer in trying to meet the needs of our students,” said Miller, a business teacher in the high school. “We need to work to improve the whole person, and by working on the basic needs, we can then move on to higher level needs.”
Around 100 students districtwide contribute to the drive.
Clint Corder’s manufacturing students are making wooden race car and soccer games this year, and students in Julie Schmidt’s food science classes are making loaves of specialty bread.
“Toys for Wildcats” was born from the mind of former longtime Northwestern Superintendent Dr. Lynne K. Corder.
Miller took over the drive in 2005.
“We’ve learned that the need continues in our community, but our community also has a heart of gold and steps out to help,” Miller said.
Items can be donated at any Northwestern school at Albion Dollar General or at the Wildcats girls’ basketball game on Dec. 12 versus Union City.
The Albion Pharmacy, 9 E. State St., is also collecting donations for the drive.
Distribution to families will be from 5 to 7 p.m. on Dec. 16 and from 9 a.m. to noon on Dec. 17.
“As of right now, we have more kids than gifts, so please consider donating either toys, sweatshirts or money, to be used to purchase needed items,” Miller said. “Thank you to everyone who is involved in this process – those who receive are truly grateful for all they are given.”
With “Toys for Wildcats” related questions or if you know of a family in need, please contact Miller at 756-9400 ext. 1272.
Check out more pics from "Fill the Bus" here: