‘Tis the season for student service

Want to know how CRSM students “holiday?” By giving back to the community.

Kicking off the season of giving, almost 60 students, their siblings and CRSM staff, spent the Saturday before Thanksgiving packing children’s books for Catholic Charities to make sure area tots find gifts from Santa under their trees and sorting clothing and household items for the Salvation Army. On the Friday and Saturday after Thanksgiving, students helped distribute warm clothing for Most Blessed Trinity’s Thanksgiving Clothing Drive.

The “Day of Service” book drive and clothing sorting event was a great success and manned by 56 volunteers: 43 students, seven siblings and parents, and six staff members, said organizer Daisy Morales, assistant director for Campus Ministry. Two buses of students and the team headed to a warehouse in Libertyville to box hundreds of children’s books that were donated by Bernie’s Book Bank and will be distributed to kids who might not otherwise receive gifts this holiday season. Another crew marched several blocks to the Salvation Army in Libertyville to spend the morning in the warehouse sorting clothing and in the shop helping customers.

Both the service day and the clothing drive are becoming growing annual events. They also underscore a tradition of year-round service for students who this semester already have clocked 687.25 hours as volunteers for the Northern Illinois Food Bank, Feed My Starving Children, Beacon Place, the PADS homeless shelter and other organizations when the need arises.

In addition, the CRSM National Honors Society is sponsoring a Christmas for Others program to help purchase gifts for children who are not so fortunate to receive presents.

“Our goal is to make sure that on Christmas, every child has a gift to open so that they too can feel loved and cared for,” said Andrea Horcher, mathematics teacher and sponsor of the NHS.