Drive by any playground this winter, and you will see children who are not dressed for the weather. A local high school club is hoping to change that.
Typically school is the place students go to learn. However, instead of using a book, a box of clothes is educating Carter Christensen about how much something like a used coat can mean to someone who does not have one of their own.
"It was brought to our attention that there are actually elementary students that go to school wearing their parents' shoes because they don't have their own set of nice shoes or their parents' coats," Carter Christensen, South Dakota DECA State President, said.
As part of Project Necessity, a nationwide movement to support families unable to buy winter clothes, DECA at Lincoln High School will give everything members collect to students at Hawthorne Elementary School.
The clothing drive is not just for Lincoln High Students. If you have things like gently used coats, scarves, gloves, hats and boots, just drop them off at Lincoln High School. DECA is taking donations for this project until December.
"We can take pretty much as much as we can get. We really don't have a set goal," Lincoln High DECA President Eric Jaton said.
DECA prepares students for business careers, but Jaton said another part of the club's motto is community service. Jaton has always been encouraged to give back.
"Especially here at school, there's always been so much support and love and comfort that has been offered to me as a student as well as a kid trying to grow up. I just kind of want to create that for somebody else," Jaton said.
That is an important lesson these students are teaching all of us.
"I just think about what I'm able to have. A warm winter coat, warm pants, warm clothes. Just to think there are kids out there, younger kids than me, even people here in our school that are less fortunate," Christensen said.
The group is collecting winter clothes until December. You can bring your gently used coats, boots, gloves, hats and any warm clothing to Lincoln High School. They are asking for smaller sizes that would fit kids.