The holidays tend to inspire people to be all the more charitable, and a couple of classes at Peterson Elementary School have made the spirit of giving a monthly tradition. Since September, a group of second grade students have been among those to put a little time aside to make sandwiches for those in need.
Daniel stuffs a ham and cheese sandwich into a ziplock bag.
“I have to squeeze the air out of it so there’s enough space for all the pieces of bread on there.”
He explains why he and the other kids are making the sandwiches.
“We really care about the Brother Francis Shelter, so the people in need they have enough food, so now we’re making some food for them so they don’t have to make it themselves because they probably don’t any money to buy the things they need so the brother Francis Shelter takes care of them.”
I speak to another student, Holly, while she waits for the loaf of bread to come her way.
“What do you think about making the sandwiches? How do you feel when you make them?” I ask.
“I feel like I’ve done something, and I’m helping, and I just feel like I’ve helped them so they don’t have to starve, so that’s what I feel.”
Teacher Erica Thompson says she first had the idea for the workshop when she saw a Facebook post asking people to make sandwiches to donate to the Brother Francis Shelter. She thought it would fit into the ‘community’ portion of the second-grade curriculum.
“We started out of the beginning of the workshop talking about community helpers, we went to the fire department across the fire department here, we researched community helpers, and realizing that you don’t have to be in one of those positions to be helping in your community, so I think that’s really helped them develop empathy and discuss homelessness and homelessness in Kodiak.”
Thompson says another class also does the workshop and they deliver the sandwiches to the shelter by the end of the day.