Students show they care

Students and seniors separated by generations came together on Saturday morning to celebrate the autumn season, and to help those who are often in need and frequently forgotten.

As a part of the Kids Care program, Sunnyslope Elementary School students brought autumn-themed decorations and baked goods for seniors and 40 decorated pillow cases filled with toiletries for the newly instated homeless program at the Veterans Home at Retsil.

“There were a ton of kids and it was a huge success,” Retsil event organizer Tami Rueter said.

The students spent their time after school last week organizing and making the decorations and pillow case packs for delivery.

“We like to care about people that are in need,” Sunnyslope student Kany Bergman said last week.

The group gathered by the dozens for the after-school sessions, taking some time to talk about what they were doing and why before diving in to the work.

Sunnyslope parent Patricia Doty organized the event following work she did for schools in Hawaii. Doty acquired a $500 grant for the program from the Quaker Oats Company.

Teachers donated baked goods and the money funded the toiletries — shaving cream, razors, shampoo, etc. — for the pillow case packs.

“Veterans might need everything in here,” Sunnyslope student Matt Kane said.”

Rueter said the new program for homeless veterans begins this week. The program mimics a transitional program for veterans leaving prison.

“A while ago it was asked, what are you doing for vetrans prior to them getting in jail?” Rueter said.

The program tied closely to the school’s “Character Counts” program, which teaches kids six values, or “pillars” — trustworthiness, respect, responsibility, fairness, caring and citizenship.

The Kids Care program comes from the Points of Light Foudnation.

For more information on Kids Care, visit

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