Zander Munroe in grade 3, Tanner Christie-grade 5, Drew Jacklin-grade 6, Ella Nickerson-grade 1, Sadie Oikle-grade 1 and Tessa Hamilton-grade 3 stand in front of Hillcrest Academy’s giving tree displaying the gifts the student body donated for World Vision. Amy Woolvett photo
Students at Hillcrest Academy in Shelburne have learned that the gift of giving is more rewarding than the gift of receiving.
With selfless hearts this past Christmas season the students throughout the school decided that instead of bringing in gifts for each other that they would instead bring in donations to support children in third world countries.
“Our school is proud to say that we raised $2,740 for World Vision,” said teacher Cheryl Blinkhorn and organizer of the project.
Students chose gifts from the World Vision catalogue to provide valuable gifts to children who have nothing.
Things like stoves, mosquito netting, clothing, medical supplies, food for a child for up to 60 days, clean water, books, education and self sustaining gifts like farm animals and fruit trees were donated with the money raised.
The idea for giving to this cause in lieu of gifts came three years ago under the direction of Blinkhorn and Caroline Morash for their primary and grade one classes, but soon the idea spread to include the entire student body.
“It started with a social studies lesson where the students were leaning what children need and what children want to be both happy and healthy,” said Blinkhorn.
She said that it was the students that decided that this was a cause they wanted to participate in.
“They were very excited to be able to buy for a child who did not have anything,” she said.
Sadie Oikle is a grade one student at the school whose class raised enough money to donate a goat, two hens and a rooster.
“I liked getting stuff for people who needed it,” said Oikle.