Class of 21 helps with holiday food drive


The year 2020 was filled with hardships for many, so Shaler Area’s senior class student government leaders took it upon themselves to spread some joy and hope by helping those in the community who are struggling. On December 17, a holiday-themed food collection drive was held at the Middle School on Mt. Royal Blvd.

Senior Class President Sonny Demasi typically saw a lot of food drives around the holiday season in previous years, but this year those drives seemed to be lacking. He and Activities Director Mrs. Mindy Thiel, along with student volunteers, decided to do something about it. And so the holiday-themed food drive was created.

They accepted drive-up donations from 4-8 p.m. and handed out cookies to those who dropped off food and supplies. There were students dressed as elves, ready to take the donations and put them on the truck. Santa was even there waving as cars pulled in to put a smile on everyone’s face.

Overall, spirits were high and everyone was excited to give what they could. The volunteers were even able to goof around in between unloading the donations, making the night a memorable one for everyone involved.

“I won’t forget the impromptu snowball fight between the volunteers and Mr. Stadelman as well as watching students catch snowflakes since it was snowing off and on throughout the night.” Mrs. Thiel said.

Despite some snowfall that day, a lot of the community made the trip to the Middle School and donated, filling a whole truck. Everyone involved was pleased with the amount collected. Although they did not count the exact number of items collected, Mrs. Thiel, was blown away with the end product.

“We were able to fill the District’s truck to the top – it was overflowing. The support from the community was overwhelming. People arrived with trunk loads of items,” she said.

The donations were delivered to the Bread of Life food pantry and handed out at the All Saints Church. With so many people struggling financially because of the pandemic, this food drive allowed for many families to enjoy a warm meal that they would not have received otherwise.

“Knowing that we have so many compassionate people in the community really gives a sense of hope during these difficult times,” Demasi said.