• December 20, 2014

Elementary students support Fisher House

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Posted: Wednesday, March 6, 2013 4:30 am | Updated: 3:53 pm, Thu Jan 23, 2014.

One school’s effort to serve soldiers in need proved such a noble cause that four other area elementary schools pitched in.

With Clifton Park Elementary School’s first-year Student Council leading the way, student councils from Cedar Valley, Saegert and Hobby elementary schools in Killeen Independent School District and Clements/Parsons Elementary in Copperas Cove donated goods to the Fisher House.

During a field trip Friday, students from the four participating KISD schools delivered more than 30 boxes of canned goods and toiletries to Fort Hood’s “home away from home” for military families receiving medical care.

Isaac Howard, Fisher House manager, told students that their donation would take the house through the winter.

“It means the world,” he said. “Right now, I can endure through the winter and focus on other items. It takes the worry off my mind.”

He pointed out the canned vegetables and tuna, as well as toothpaste and array of other goods would allow him to direct funds to purchases like meat.

The 10,000-square-foot, seven-bedroom house provides respite for family members of those receiving medical care at nearby Carl R. Darnall Army Medical Center.

Galatea Badger, counselor at Clifton Park Elementary School, came up with the idea. She is a three-time participant in the Marine Corps Marathon, which supports the military charity.

Badger said the officers of her fledgling student council became excited during a leadership event with other schools and decided they wanted to collaborate on a large project.

“This is unique,” Badger said. “It’s a special cause because military families come for treatment and need a place to stay.”

Students caught hold of the special cause.

“I think it’s special because there are a lot of rooms here and things people can use,” said Hobby fifth-grader Abby Dascalos. “We wanted to take care of people, to help them get better.”

“We are helping people who need a home,” said Cedar Valley fifth-grader Ella Taynor. She said her school brought 100 canned goods and 100 toiletry items.

“That will last a long time,” she said. “It makes me feel good because people can stay here and have what they need.”

The Clifton Park counselor was touched by her students’ excitement to help others. In their first year as a council, they have raised money for leukemia research, the United Way and are planning a campus beautification project.

“I like that we get to help people and we have fun with it,” said Clifton Park fifth-grader Sydnee Niswonger. She described a day when students could wear pajamas to school if they donated a canned food item.

“I think we helped a lot,” said Clifton Park fifth-grader Lily Cerda. “We gave a lot and four other schools helped. We’re just trying to make a difference. If everyone did this, there would be no more need.”

In addition to visiting the Fisher House, students toured the 1st Cavalry Division museum and visited the Robertson Blood Center.

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