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Published: Friday, 2/15/2013

Woodland Elementary students collect socks for charity

BY FEDERICO MARTINEZ
BLADE STAFF WRITER
Second graders Anthony Kovacs, 8, left, Nikhil Methi, 6, center, and Adrianna Magers, 8, right, hold autobiographies today with ideas about ways they could help people in their communities. Second graders Anthony Kovacs, 8, left, Nikhil Methi, 6, center, and Adrianna Magers, 8, right, hold autobiographies today with ideas about ways they could help people in their communities.
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Students at Perrysburg’s Woodland Elementary School are showing just how big their hearts are by collecting socks for the needy this week.

The students are collecting the socks on behalf of Hannah’s Socks, a nonprofit organization that gives new socks to homeless and domestic violence shelters and others in need. Other Perrysburg students this week have had several opportunities to participate in Random Acts of Kindness, including students at Fort Meigs Elementary School.

Robin Laird, a board member for the Hannah's Socks charity organization, met with students in grades 1-5 today to explain why their efforts are so important. Ms. Laird is an assistant principal at Perrysburg Junior High School

“Think about it,” Ms. Laird told the students. “In the morning many of you just open up a drawer, grab a pair of socks, and put them on. You don’t even think about it.”

Other people aren’t as fortunate, Ms. Laird said.

Lynn Cherry, a second-grade teacher at Woodland, said the sock drive is part of a service learning project designed to teach students the importance of being compassionate. Ms. Cherry organized the school-wide project.

PHOTO GALLERY: Woodland Elementary students learn about Hannah's Socks

The message resonated with some students.

“Some people don’t have socks,” said 8-year-old, second-grade student Ellie Garst as she tried to explain the importance of the effort. “Our school is going to give them socks to keep their feet warm if they don’t have shoes.”

Creation of the Hannah’s Socks charity was inspired by the real-life efforts of Hannah Turner of Perrysburg while she was helping to serve Thanksgiving Day meals at the Toledo Cherry Street Mission in 2004. She was a 4-year-old at the time. 

After noticing a man wearing worn-out shoes with no socks, she convinced her mom, Doris Turner, to help her collect and donate more than 100 socks to people in the Toledo area. 

In 2012, the charity collected 250,000 socks in the Toledo area, Ms. Laird told students. 

Woodland students are collecting the socks through Friday.

Earlier in the week, Fort Meigs Elementary students donated spare change for those who suffered devastating loss during Superstorm Sandy; they donated hats, gloves, scarves, and boots to families who are provided services at Family House in Toledo; they donated toys, art supplies, snacks, playing cards, and other items for care packages for Elias Adin’s Comforting Hearts Inc. to help comfort children and their families who are battling cancer.

Fort Meigs students also had the chance to donate socks for the Hannah's Sock outreach effort, and students could donate to Central City Ministry, a consortium of two elementary schools located in central Toledo, gently used children’s book to help children start or grow their at-home libraries, fostering a love of reading to young children.

Too, the Fort Meigs students were encouraged to add extra Valentine's Day cards when writing out the holiday cards. Those extra cards were destined for residents in nursing homes in Perrysburg.

Other opportunities for the Fort Meigs students included recycling used cell phones to help provide troops with free calls with prepaid phone cards from Cell Phones for Soldiers.

Contact Federico Martinez at: fmartinez@theblade.com or 419-724-6154.



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