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Church, schools continue relief efforts

Posted: September 13, 2017 - 1:57am
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David Blackwood, associate pastor at Wesley United Methodist Church, organizes supplies before packing flood buckets.
David Blackwood, associate pastor at Wesley United Methodist Church, organizes supplies before packing flood buckets.

More hurricane relief efforts continued throughout Columbia County last week, amid threats of then-approaching Hurricane Irma, including at Columbia County schools.

Stefanie Frye, who teaches ninth through 12th grades at Greenbrief High School, brought in several large bags of cleaning-supply donations for the more than 100 flood buckets that were sent from Wesley United Methodist Church to flood victims in Texas.

The church's youth and other volunteers gathered last Wednesday to stuff the buckets with supplies such as dishwashing liquid, laundry detergent, clothesline rope, work and dish gloves, trash bags, sponges and other needed items.

Frye said her school held a supply drive for the Red Cross at the school but that several students from her gifted geometry and pre-calculus classes brought donations for the flood buckets as well.

As the buckets were being packed , Frye came in with more to add to the growing pile of donations.

"We put out an alert that we were collecting for the Harvey flood victims. They brought in cleaning supplies, and I had somebody that brought in towels because we did a drive for Red Cross at our school, too," Frye said.

It's all part of what Frye said she teaches her students about giving back.

"I encourage my kids to give so they can reach out to others outside of their own comfort zone and give what they can. Just the idea of being able to donate. It's for a good cause," Frye said.

Students at Evans High School also held one of the three blood drives health care pathway students coordinate each year in partnership with Shepherd Community Blood Center, bringing record turnout, according to teacher Tami Gordon.

Gordon said that Evans High's future health care professionals group HOSA's advanced clinical students sponsored three blood drives at the school, with the most recent being held while major hurricanes have been hammering the U.S.

"During the blood drive, the Healthcare Science students complete the recruitment of students, faculty, and volunteers to assist with the blood donation process," Gordon said via email. "Students assist with the pre-registration process, accompanying students back to class after donating, providing hydration, snacks, or first aid as needed, and other tasks under the supervision of the Evans Healthcare Science teachers."

Gordon said the recent blood drive saw a total of 154 presenting donors, 88 of whom were first-time donors, and 109 good units collected.

"I believe this blood drive was successful due to the heightened awareness of the critical need to donate blood due to recent U.S. hurricane disasters," Gordon said. "Our school is like a family, and our family wants to help those in need. It is such an amazing event to watch. I am amazed by the students and faculty who donate their blood, the students who volunteer their time, and the efforts made by the entire school to ensure that the blood drive runs smoothly."

Grovetown's Depart­ment of Public Safety reported that it sent two truckloads last week of clothing, water and other items to the Richmond County Sheriff's Office and Oasis Church of Hephzibah, to be distributed in Texas.

 

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