Students Spread Good Will With Help From Community - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Students Spread Good Will With Help From Community

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RICHLAND, Wash. - Staffers at Jefferson Elementary School along with students at Hanford High School are spreading goodwill with some help from the community.

Together they provided gifts and food baskets for 67 families who have kids who attend the school.

It's something that's important to the staff because 70% of their students qualify for free or reduced meals, so staff have been fundraising all year to make sure their kids have a happy holiday. Peggy Simkins, who is a teacher's aide put on fundraising events all year to raise $3,000. The money was used to buy $50 gift cards for families in need from Winco.

But, even throughout the year the staff take care of their students.

"Our staff buys shoes for kids all the time through out the year,coats, anything they need. they need their basic needs met before they can learn," said Suzie Oram, Jefferson's Guidance Counselor.

She said they always keep extra sucks and underwear in their health room for the kids that need it too.

"We collected over 200 presents from our school and we had 37 families. and then we wrapped them and got them all together and brought them here," said Junior Sarah Giomi.

Each child received a toy, an outfit and a pair of shoes. Anne Chapman from Perspective Salon in Richland also created 37 food basket to give to the families in need.

"It takes a huge burden off our shoulders. and we're just really thankful," said Ashley Bernado who has six children, five of which go the Jefferson.