Students recognized for supporting homeless veterans

by Jillian Hartmann

ALTOONA, PA - A Blair County school collected more than 16,000 personal care items to support homeless veterans.

Students at Irving Elementary School in the Altoona Area School District were recognized for their tremendous donation to the American Red Cross “Totes of Hope” campaign. “It touched by heart and everybody at the Red Cross was just amazed,” American Red Cross representative Lori Demchak said. With the help from parents and faculty, kids in the student council made it all possible in just a week.

"No school, no group, no business ... nobody we've worked with has ever reached 16,000 items, ever,” Demchak said. During an assembly Monday morning, American Red Cross recognized the kids’ efforts and gave them a certificate of appreciation. "It was the whole school. Every kid helped out,” student council president Austin Beauchamp said. “Everybody was a part of it."

The kids went above and beyond to support homeless veterans from collecting items to writing “Thank You” letters. "There shouldn't be any homeless veterans because they served our country so we just wanted to give them something in return," Beauchamp said.

The items will be placed inside backpacks or totes and then distributed to homeless veterans across Pennsylvania.

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