Also: Hospital workers go wreath-crazy for the holidays, and Pine Trail Elementary students DARE to be drug-free.
BY MIKE CAVALIERE | ASSOCIATE EDITOR
The 180 Teen Church youth group, at Tomoka Christian Church, slept a night outside last month in order to better understand what it might be like to be homeless.
Fifty middle school teens from Tomoka and three other area churches collected blankets, clothes, shoes and money for the event. The supplies were donated to several different community groups, and depending on how much each teen collected, they were able to turn their items in for an exchange of a jacket or blanket, or both. They also made shelters out of cardboard boxes and heard speaker presentations, including one from a 10-year-old homeless girl who now lives in the STAR Center.
“We really want our kids to see how real this is, and how Volusia County is impacted by our homeless population,” organizer Christina Moore said.
A check for $1,655 was written to the STAR Center, and the Daytona Outreach Center received a truckload of supplies
Community out-wreath: Health workers donate 36 pieces of holiday cheer
For the third consecutive year, employees at Florida Hospital Memorial Medical decorated and donated 36 wreaths last month to the Children’s Home Society, The Jesus Clinic and the Domestic Abuse Council.
“Our hope was that we could share these beautifully decorated wreaths with some of our local families who otherwise wouldn’t have been able to enjoy any holiday decorations in their homes,” Farzad Nourian, hospital chaplain, said.
Florida Hospital Volusia-Flagler collectively contributed more than $96 million in benefits to the underprivileged in 2011.
Pine Trail students DARE to be drug-free
The 2012 DARE graduation, at Pine Trail Elementary, saw 135 students pass the 10-week drug-awareness program. In addition to parents and family, city officials and DARE Officers Stokes and Cornelius were on hand for the ceremony.
Each student also had to complete a DARE essay as part of their graduation, and one student from each class was chosen as a contest winner.
The DARE essay winners, all of which read their essays at graduation, were Hunter Mischler, Sara Stelter, Alicia Cervantes, Catherine Marinaccio, Mary Pickett and Shane Frichette.