Thanks to many for help
in giving books to kids
To the editor:
This year's Santa's Bookbag project was very successful due to the hard work and generosity of many people. Working with The Sentinel, the Salvation Army, and local Community Christmas Project, we provided books at Christmas for 638 children.
Each child received one new and many used books. A special thanks to the Mifflin County School District who, through the support of principals and administrators, allowed us to conduct a book drive in the schools. The Title 1 Language Arts teachers and many classroom teachers helped make the book drive a success. Special thanks to Diane Shearer and the Association of Mifflin County Educators for their help.
Many schools conducted highly successful book drives. The Mifflin County High School Key Club helped to clean and sort books as did members of the National Honor Society. Thanks to their advisors, Vicky Henry, Randy Fluke and Dave McCachren for coordinating these efforts. The young people who donated books and helped are to be commended. They represent the very best in our schools for compassion and going above and beyond during a very busy season.
The following students from Mifflin County High School helped: Katie Crowder, Kiara Noland, Dylan Crosson, Kristen Doverspike, Kelsey Barth, Halle Fisher, Andrew Traxler, Caleb Drukenmiller, Jon Chester, Shannon Kauffman, Max Fultz, Gage Reesman, Alex Smith, Zanna Hannon, Alana Felton, Shana Wagner, Olivia Runk, Jacob Wagner, Ben Knepp, Ashley Foltz, Kirstie Fultz, Katie LaMarca, Allison Rhodes, Selia Roman - White, Chase Yetter, Ashley Wert, Bret Pallotto, Callie Lewis, Katie Hassinger, Samantha Hendricks, Micaela Mills, Sam Peters, Allison Stuck, Joe Cox, Sidney Lewis, Michaela Wilson, Karilyn Elder, Dakotah Schlegel, Aaron Michaels, Rebecca Collins, Sage Heckendorn, Finnian Saylor, and Madyson Kuhns.
Many students helped on multiple occasions and are exemplary representatives of their school.
The following individuals helped to clean, sort, and match books: Marianne Hornyak, Barbara Nielsen, Mary Ann Stratton, Bernelda Winer, Leonard Ronk, Doris Hidlay, Mary Jo Everhart, Karen Shelato, Grace Kauffman, Kathleen Hartley, Paul Grego, Steve and Darlene Rynkewitz, Helen Lodanosky, Diane Hallinan, Nanciele Fink, John Gallagher, Beth Lambert, Monica Cox, Carol Reardon, Sheryl George, Kathy Boyer, Kim Aurand, Ross Moore, Jane Rager, Nora Torquato, April Montgomery, Joan Loewen, Carol Dill, Lauri Dulis, Gloria Richards, Bonnie Gallagher, Linda Dalby, Sue Searer, Jeremy Mattern, Elise Santarelli, Rick Bender, Brenda Dillman, Abby Traxler, MaKayla Henry, and Nik Christine.
There were others who helped and did not sign a list. Thank you.
A special thanks to Karen Galbraith for her help in setting up a computer information system. Thanks to Nancy Ressler and Linda Dalby who along with Karen tirelessly entered all information which provided labels and lists.
Special thanks to Maryann Stratton, Sue Pierce and Doris Hidlay who helped purchase and coordinate books throughout the year and Kathryn Wisegarver who keeps our records accurate. Special thanks to Sharon Armstrong for her help with our letters and files, and to Diane Wheeler for assisting with coordinating Thank You letters. As new people took on tasks for the first time such as mailing of fund-raising letters there may have been some past givers who were omitted. We are sorry for the oversight, however, we welcome your contribution.
Without the support and dedication of the Mifflin County Chapter of PA School Retirees, this project would not be successful. Thanks to my family who year after year work in all the jobs of Santa's Bookbag.
Thanks to Grace United Methodist Church for allowing us to use their community room to sort, clean, and match books. The tremendous cooperation and support from Grace Church members and Rev. Rick Bender are truly appreciated. Special thanks to Scott Fultz, advisor, and the Senior High Youth for their help.
A special thanks to Ed Williams, Ruth Eddy, and the entire Sentinel staff for their continued support, particularly for the transportation of the books to First United Methodist Church in Lewistown. A special thanks to Cassie Campbell and Janet Campbell for their help at the Alternative Gift Fair.
Thanks to Giant Foods in Burnham who donated plastic bags. The Salvation Army coordinated the list of children to receive books as part of the Community Christmas Project. Margie Smith, Helen Searer and First United Methodist Church in Lewistown did the final matching of books with other presents
for children. This is truly a community effort.
A final thanks to those who made monetary donations to the program. Monetary donations can still be mailed to Ruth Eddy at The Sentinel. These donations help us purchase books for the 2013 effort. With the cost of books rising additional funds will be needed. It is our opinion that giving a child a book might be the first vital step in promoting a lifetime of literacy.