Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Kids get hugs for donations

Carrying bags as large as their little bodies, Patty Jenkins' second grade class hauled old clothes and more to the Goodwill trailer in front of Cotswold Elementary School on Tuesday. The students grinned brightly as they received a bookmark in return.

They saved the biggest smiles for the high fives and hugs they gave the Goodwill mascot. Tuesday was the first day of Goodwill Industries Southern Piedmont's donation drive at Cotswold. The drive is part of Goodwill's effort to partner with schools. The program shows students how they can help the community by recycling their personal items, said Armando Barragan of Goodwill.

The drive meshed well with Cotswold's effort to teach students to do more than recycle cans, bottles and paper, said Mary Hooks, IB coordinator. The drive taught them to recycle personal items.

Goodwill is ramping up the school partnerships that started at Charlotte Country Day last year. Goodwill is doing two drives a month. The drives last two days.

At Cotswold, at least 15 parents volunteered to help collect donations. Lee Ham helped load bags in the trailer on Tuesday. Her son Cutler, 6, is a kindergartener at Cotswold. She said the donation drive reinforced what she teaches him: She makes him donate items to agencies before he can receive new stuff.

"He has too much," she said. "We're trying to explain there are children who don't get surprises unless it's Christmas."

Get involved
The Goodwill trailer will be staffed from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. both days at Cotswold. The community is encouraged to donate.

If you would like your school to hold a Goodwill donation drive, call 704-372-3434