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Woodson students raise, donate funds for Adopt-A-Senior
Their word of the month is generosity, and the third-grade students were giddy with anticipation and excitement as they prepared to share their generosity with Corning seniors on Friday.
Three third-grade classes at Woodson Elementary School have been raising funds to donate to the Tehama County Senior Nutrition Adopt-A-Senior program as they put their generosity into action.
"I learned about the program while attending a Rotary Club meeting," said Woodson third-grade teacher Veronica McFadden. "We had been looking for a 'generosity' project and I knew the Adopt-A-Senior would be perfect."
McFadden and the other two third-grade teachers, Ann Ferry and Karen Jones, presented the idea to the students and the loved it.
During December, the students have been gathering their nickels, dimes, quarters and dollars and bringing them to school for the project.
"I raised money by doing chores at home," said one boy. Others said they did the same.
One female student's family rallied the idea and gave her all of their recyclables for her to turn in.
"She was able to raise $42," McFadden said. In total, the students raised more than $200 to donate to the senior nutrition program.
According to Tehama County Senior Nutrition Coordinator Gaylen Norman, that will pay for a senior to receive meals for four months.
On Friday, Norman and Corning senior, 88-year-old Bill Terle met with the Woodson third-graders to receive the donation and talk to them about the local seniors, their needs, and how the donated funds will be used.
"Bill (Terle) is one of the Corning seniors who is delivered a senior nutrition meal five-days a week," Norman said. "He is a retired engineer for the B&O Railroad."
She told the students the county nutrition program delivers more than 90 meals to seniors Monday through Friday, 22 of those meals delivered to seniors in Corning.
Norman asked the students if they could guess what is the seniors' favorite meal.
"Soup," said one student, "macaroni and cheese," said another.
"Actually it is turkey, mashed potatoes, dressing and all the other stuff we eat for Thanksgiving," Norman said.
She explained how important the meal delivery to the seniors' homes is.
"Sometimes our delivery person is the only person some seniors see everyday," Norman stated.
One student asked, "Have you ever lost a senior?"
"Yes," Norman responded. "And it is very difficult when they die because we get very close to them and we miss them."
She asked the students if they had any seniors who were their neighbors, or older members of their families.
"If you do, you could help us by going to see them and check on them. Go visit them and give them a smile. That would probably be the best part of their day," Norman said.
Students enjoyed the idea so much they came up with their own suggestions, such as making cards and pictures for seniors, and calling them on the phone to say "hi."
One student was very concerned about the fact the seniors who received meals five-days a week wouldn't be seen on Saturdays and Sundays.
"We worry about that too," Norman said.
It is because of a lack of government funding that the county senior nutrition program has initiated the Adopt-A-Senior program.
"We suggest a $2.75 donation from the seniors for their meals, but some can't afford to pay that amount, but we never turn them down," Norman explained. "The actual cost of the meals is more than double that amount and funds are running low. But we can't stop delivering the meals because for some of the seniors it is the only good meal they get each day."
That is why she is seeking the help of the Tehama County community to assist by taking part in the adoption program.
"What these young students have done means a lot to our seniors, and to me," Norman stated.
To make a contribution call Norman at 527-2414 or send the donation to Senior Nutrition Program/Adopt A Senior, 1500 S. Jackson St., Red Bluff, CA 96080.