BY LESLIE ALARCON
Every holiday should consist of lots of celebrations and happiness, but for some families the holidays are the darkest of days. Those families pray for what we will not even consider because of our selfish ways. Being able to afford basic food items for the holidays seems like no luxury for the average person, but having an abundance of food is only a dream for those who are not as fortunate. As a community and school, we are making the holidays a whole lot brighter for those families. Our school challenges every 3rd block class to fill a box with basic thanksgiving food items that later will be gifted personally by a principal to the door of those families.
The poverty rate in Morristown, TN is 19.8% distressingly higher than the national rate of 11.8%. Thus meaning one out of every 3.7 residents in the Hamblen area are living in property. Numbers like these are no trophy to display in our town. The children that must endure these unfair circumstances go unnoticed too regularly. Those children did not choose their darkness but be the change and be their light.
As a community we are taking every measure necessary to improve the lives for those children. School being the start of the breakthrough. All schools in the Hamblen area provide free and reduced lunch to give a meal to those who really need it. West High takes this a step further to provide shoes, clothing items, and hygiene necessities for those children as well. Hamblen County also provides a free breakfast bag to every single student in school regardless of their status.
Although, every child gets to enjoy a warm meal at school some children still have to wait till the next day to receive another meal. Another step taken to improve the quality of life for these children is a program called Food on Foot that gives a free meal bag to students after school every Friday.
Making a difference in someone's life can make an even bigger impact in your own. Want the better for you and everyone around. Show others the kindness we would like in return. Everyone deserves the best things in life, lets help and make the difference in our community. Be the reason someone smiles today!