PBHS students, staff take giving on the road: Group shops here for the Angel Tree programStudents and staff at Pingree-Buchanan High School took Thursday off from classes to give back to those in the area less fortunate than themselves. With only a few weeks of notice the 84 students at the 7-12 grade high school raised $1,750 for the Salvation Army Angel Tree program. Staff chipped in an additional $385.
By: Ben Rodgers, The Jamestown Sun
Students and staff at Pingree-Buchanan High School took Thursday off from classes to give back to those in the area less fortunate than themselves.
With only a few weeks of notice the 84 students at the 7-12 grade high school raised $1,750 for the Salvation Army Angel Tree program. Staff chipped in an additional $385.
Thursday students were scattered around the Buffalo Mall, Kmart and Walmart in Jamestown buying gifts for strangers, before they dropped them off at the Salvation Army.
“Usually the kids give gifts to each other,” said Rick Bailey, superintendent and principal. “This year instead of giving gifts to each other we thought we’d give gifts to someone else.”
Office staff at the school came up with the idea to donate to the Angel Tree program.
The Angel Tree program helps more than 100 families in the area with children ranging from newborns to 17-year-olds and residents of Stutsman County.
Each child’s first name and age goes onto a card, which is hung on a tree outside different stores in the community.
Students on Thursday were able to take 70 cards as well as help three families. Teachers from Pingree-Buchanan helped an additional family.
“I think they’d be more grateful than we would for our gifts to each other,” said Kelly Thomas, PBHS senior.
Thomas and a group of four other seniors stood in a circle at Kmart showing what they all picked out for someone in need.
Pajamas were a popular item, as well as winter clothes and a set of earrings. The five were shopping for ages 2 to 17.
“I thought about what I liked at that age,” said Thomas who was shopping for a 13-year-old.
With multiple causes out there staff at the high school thought this was the best choice — students agreed.
“It kind of makes it personal who you’re buying gifts for, then, instead of donating money,” said Zach Perleberg, senior.
Donations averaged $24 a student, but some went above and beyond the call, Bailey said.
“With a couple of kids contributing $100 — sometimes when you have somebody model the behavior it makes the rest go easier,” he said.
Bailey said the event was received well by the students and the community. The local booster club provided an incentive for students to donate with lunch after the event at Pizza Ranch for those who donated.
“I think the kids have caught on so it’ll be something, in fact I may talk to our student council about it and have them take the leadership next year,” he said.
Sun reporter Ben Rodgers can be reached at 701-952-8455 or by email at email@example.com