By Kathleen Kraemer
The holiday season is a time of giving and caring for others.
Many organizations at ESU have used the holiday spirit to bring the campus community together to raise funds, feed the hungry and help those in need.
For the month of November, Student Senate hosted their 16th Annual Teddy Bear Drive.
Senate asked the campus community for donations of new toys and new or gently used teddy bears and stuffed animals of all kinds.
The donations could be dropped off at the Student Senate office until Nov. 30.
Student Senate President Drew Johnson says he is pleased with this year’s outcome.
“Our senators always step up and use their resources to pull together a great turnout,” says Johnson.
“Pocono Medical Center, faculty, staff, the ESU community and the Monroe [County] community at large are really supportive in this effort,” he adds.
Now that Senate has received all of the donations, they will wrap them up and sort them by age group.
The drive will conclude with an event on Saturday at noon in the University Center.
“The location is typically in Keystone, but its offline so we switched it up a bit,” says Johnson.
Attendees can look forward to a warm welcome, with cookies and hot cocoa provided.
They’ll have the opportunity to interact with Student Senators, play games and celebrate the drive.
“We reached out to Head Start, a local day care, and some other affiliates for underprivileged youth of the Stroudsburg area and Monroe County,” explains Johnson.
“[The drive] allows us to provide gifts for children who otherwise might not have gotten anything,” he continues.
“The goal is to try to get every kid a toy,” elaborates Senator Louie Wien.
“There are a lot of people who are less fortunate and don’t have anything during the holiday season, so this is Student Senate’s way of giving back to our community.”
In addition to the toys and teddy bears collected by Student Senate this year, faculty union APSCUF (the Association of Pennsylvania State College and University Faculties) will help the cause by contributing new books for the children.
This is the first year that Senate has received books as donations, a welcome change in the tradition.
“[It’s] so exciting to have their support and collaboration,” enthuses Johnson.
During the event, the wrapped toys and books will be distributed to the children in attendance.
A teddy bear or stuffed animal will accompany each gift.
Come join the Senators, and help to spread some holiday cheer!
The Teddy Bear Drive will be Senate’s grand finale for the semester, but they are far from finished.
They have already begun to plan for their spring events.
For more information contact Drew Johnson at email@example.com.
Senate can also be found on Twitter (@ESUSenate) and Instagram (@humansofesu).
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