The K-8 students of the St. Joseph School in Bronxville, New York sent 68 soldiers at Camp Marmel, Afghanistan Care Packages for Christmas. The project planning began in early October with the children bringing in items for the boxes. Items included snacks, candy, powdered drinks, books, magazines (“Popular Mechanic”), toiletries, hand warmers, socks and winter hats.
In mid-October the students needed to raise $1,100 to ship the boxes. The 5th graders held two bake sales in school during “snack time” that successfully raised $400. The entire school dedicated their “Dress Down Day” (kids wear uniforms daily) at the end of the month to the shipping cost which raised $626. Finally, generous parishoners from St. Joseph’s Church donated $300 and items to put in the boxes. In total the kids raised $1,326! What money wasn’t used for shipping went towards more items to be purchased for the boxes.
In November, K-4 graders made each soldier a bookmark and grades 6-8 wrote letters to each of the 68 soldiers. On returning from Thanksgiving, the 7th & 8th graders spent two mornings packing the boxes. Once the now 85 boxes were packed they were brought down to the school gym for a school wide picture with the pastor, principal and faculty. The children were all thanked for their tremendous efforts and the pastor blessed the boxes and off they went to the post office.
The troops received the packages within 8 days. The heartfelt thanks was truly overwhelming from the troops. The school has received many emails and letters of thanks along with the flag flown over Camp Marmel, Afghanistan on Christmas Day. But the biggest thanks of all was the true Christmas Spirit given to the soldiers from the school children!