Brooklyn Park/Lindale Middle School students are working on four projects to benefit the county's homeless and needy.
Eighth-grader Brice Carson and his teacher Richard Burger toured Sarah's House, a Fort Meade shelter for women, last month to learn more about how the residents live. Brice walked out the door with a 68-item "wish list" of things needed by residents.
In March, he plans to start fulfilling their wishes by asking schoolmates to donate such goods as disposable diapers, baby food, hair brushes, pillows, powdered milk, tuna, and clothing for adults and children.
"I hope the people at Sarah's House get the necessary things needed so they can save more money so they can buy things like a house," said Brice.
Students also will be asked to donate artwork from their classes to help decorate Sarah's House.
Seventh-graders Cecilia Chavez, Jael Roed and Jason Bryant are part of a team that conducted a nonfood drive this month to benefit the North County Emergency Outreach Network in Glen Burnie. The organization offers support to the needy to get them through rough times.
Students left collection bags in classrooms during the drive, which ran about a month. The effort yielded five bags of goods such as toothbrushes, soap and shampoo.
"We gave homework passes to anyone who brought items," said Jael. "Of course, that brought in a lot."
The drive ended about a week ago.
The students designed posters to promote their campaign. Jael won first place and a $25 Sam Goody's gift certificate. Cecilia won second place and a $15 certificate. Jason Brown received a $10 for coming in third.
Another project at the school involves an eighth-grade team of students who began a Read-A-Thon Feb. 14 with the theme "Have A Heart for the Homeless." The program runs into March.
Students can solicit parents and neighbors to sponsor them and to contribute money based on the number of books read. Proceeds will be used to buy three or four oversized books and an easel for the day-care program at the Salvation Army in Annapolis.
Brooklyn Park/Lindale also is one of several schools helping Southern Middle School provide bag lunches for Lighthouse Shelter in Annapolis, said Mr. Burger.
Once a month, about eight schools in the network provide 30 bag lunches for residents at the shelter, he said.
Brooklyn Park/Lindale Middle's turn comes up in March.