Golden Apple: Kelliher Students Collect Hygiene Products To Help Homeless Population In Minneapolis
Kelliher School’s “Family, Career and Community Leaders of America” students have had a busy year. First, there was the Kelliher Kits program, than a lesson on seatbelt safety. Now, two students are making changes by collecting hundreds of hygiene products.
“I hope that it shows them that even by doing just a little bit, we can change their lives,” says Monica Johnson about her FCCLA project “Fresh Start.”
Monica Johnson and Ella Raincloud started the project “Fresh Start” for those who have been displaced through homelessness or the foster care system. They challenged their school and community to donate hygiene products and cleaning supplies. The items were to be given to the Red Lake foster care system and to a place called the Avivo down in Minneapolis. The Avivo places homeless people in military style tents, collectively known as the Navigation center.
Raincloud says, “They’re heated and they get food but they don’t always have cleaning supplies and people that are getting moved into housing, they’re houses get furnished but they don’t have basic cleaning supplies.”
Johnson chose to take on the project because she knows what it’s like to do without. She says, “I was in foster care when I was little and I remember moving to where, or getting adopted, I didn’t have much stuff to call my own so I had to start over when I got here.”
Raincloud wanted to help Native Americans. She says, “There’s a good number of Native Americans living in the navigation center and that were living in the encampment so I feel like if I didn’t get to do my project last year, this kind of is similar.”
With over 50 laundry baskets of items collected, the drive far exceeded the girls’ expectations! They delivered half the items to the Avivo down in Minneapolis and went on to win a silver award for Advocacy at the FCCLA state competition.
Clare Kupcho, the Kelliher FCCLA advisor, says, “The fact that they want to advocate for young kids and for the people that need some assistance because of poverty issues or other issues that Ella talked about, I think it’s pretty cool that they are advocating to help all these people.”