Students Raise Money For Needy Family Fund


Hannah Kopek, Staff Writer

The children of 35 families will have a happy Christmas thanks to the Needy Family Fund, which has been helping needy families for the past 25 years.  The fund has grown steadily since it originated in 1992, serving four families.

Teachers also encourage their students to get involved too, by having class period competitions.

“A competition gives people a little more incentive to participate, but more importantly it makes people more aware of this great cause,”  Darren Kobliska,  history and economics teacher, said.

“Student council has been involved in the Needy Family Fund for years. It is a wonderful thing to do for people in need. Student council, and all of its members love to help people in need,” Kristy Riley, a Student Council advisor, said.

Audrey Stein, bookkeeper, has been involved in the Needy Family Fund for over 15 years. According to her records, PHS raised over $4,000 in monetary donations last year alone. She says the Fund helps many families get back on their feet during and after the holiday season.

“People who have been helped come back and donate because it meant so much to them. These families are at such a low point, they don’t have money to buy things for their children, or feed them well, so this helps them during this special time of year,” Stein said.

Many teachers in the building get involved by purchasing an “ugly Christmas sweater” shirt for which about $900 of the proceeds go to the Needy Family Fund. The shirts are designed by Matthew Clark, math teacher.

“These people that we are helping out, they’re like me and you, just maybe having a bad month. It [financial troubles] could happen to anyone,” Clark said.

“Not all of the schools participate although we encourage them to,” Linda Hanley, organizer of the Needy Family Fund, said. Only a handful of schools in the Plainfield School District participate each year, including PHS-CC, Indian Trail and Ira Jones Middle Schools, Lakewood Falls, Central Elementary and Lincoln Elementary.  .

Other organizations contribute as well, such as C.W. Avery Family YMCA, Followers of Christ Lutheran Church, American Legion Auxilary Marne Unit #13, and the PHS-CC Student Council.

Anyone interested in supporting the Needy Family fund by making a monetary donation, or adopting a family can contact Linda Hanley via e-mail at [email protected], or Audrey Stein at [email protected].