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Small acts, big difference

Small actions – and even small people – can make a big difference in the world.

A group of local children demonstrated that earlier this month, collecting canned goods and other non-perishable food items in behalf of people they may never meet.

At Hills Elementary School, students conducted an annual food drive to benefit Mingo Social Services and the school’s in-house food pantry. Their effort took place from Oct. 29-Nov. 8, and the youngsters gathered 1,214 non-perishable items in the process.

Ashley Turnbull, fourth grade student council adviser, said this represents the largest collection she has seen over many years of organizing the project.

“This is way more than we’ve ever collected before,” Turnbull said. “This is my fourth year but this is the first time we’ve split donations because we had so much, and it stays here in Mingo.”

According to Turnbull, the school helps 12 families each week by sending home items from the food pantry. Mongo Social Services aids many more. She said the students were “beyond generous” in their efforts to collect and contribute this year.

Of course, some incentives were offered to get the students motivated. The top two giving classes each received a pizza party for their reward. The winners were A.J. Renner’s third grade class and Amy Lane’s kindergarten class, demonstrating that even the littlest among us can have a big impact.

There are many little projects like this one taking place all over the Ohio Valley right now. Schools, food pantries, soup kitchens, churches and other, larger organizations are collecting non-perishable foods, money, gifts and warm clothing for those in need. We all have abundant opportunities to do little things or give little gifts that can make a big difference for those who are less fortunate than we are.

We urge our readers to keep their eyes open for such chances and to contribute when able. Whether you give your time, your money, some small gifts such as books and toiletries or something bigger, such as a warm winter coat, you likely will gain just as much from making the gesture as the recipient of your kindness will.

Kudos to the children and organizers of the project at Hills Elementary. Your hard work is appreciated, and you should be proud that you are doing good things for your community and the world.

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