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SCC school's giving tree provides holiday help

St. Croix Central Elementary School's giving tree is already starting to be surrounded with food and non-perishable items for families in need in the Roberts and Hammond area. A group of St. Croix Central fourth-graders have been helping elementary school counselor Alyssa Matzek sort and organize the items under the tree. Pictured (from left) are fourth-graders Mya Kizer, Holly Hoolihan, Alexa Sippel and Olivia Cleary.

The Christmas tree shining with lights and red and green ornaments in St. Croix Central Elementary School's lobby is not just for decoration, nor does it have your typical presents underneath it.

The tree is the school's "Giving Tree," a part of the annual "Giving Tree" campaign put on by the school to collect non-perishable items for the Roberts Food Pantry and families that request help.

Alyssa Matzek, SCCES counselor, is in charge of coordinating the "Giving Tree" campaign.

"I think it's important to give back to our community in a way that helps support our students and families," Matzek said.

She said about five families have contacted her asking for help from the "Giving Tree" so far this season. Most of the food, she said, will go to the Roberts Food Pantry.

Matzek said each grade level is being asked to bring in certain types of items to donate. Early childhood, kindergarten and first grade students were asked to bring in canned goods, second-graders were asked to bring in personal hygiene items, third-graders were asked to bring in boxed food items and fourth-graders were asked to bring in paper products like Kleenex and toilet paper, as well as cleaning supplies like laundry soap or dish soap.

Matzek said volunteers will deliver the items to the Roberts Food Pantry the week of Dec. 10.

Gretta Stark

Gretta Stark has been a reporter for the River Falls Journal since July of 2013. She previously worked as a reporter for the New Richmond News from June 2012 to July 2013. She holds a BA in Print and Electronic Media from Wartburg College.

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