Charles County Public Schools (CCPS) staff at the Jesse L. Starkey Administration Building recently held its annual Thanksgiving food drive to benefit LifeStyles of Maryland Inc. and CCPS Community Schools. A week from Thanksgiving, LifeStyles staff stopped by Starkey with two larges buses to collect the donation.
“When I see you do this — which is outside of the realm of what you do every day — it just means you recognize the importance of what you’re doing for families,” Sandy Washington, chief executive officer and co-founder of LifeStyles, said when greeting CCPS staff “Nobody can say anything about Charles County Public Schools to us that is not positive. Because we work with you every single day.”
Starkey staff — each department forms a team — collected monetary donations and shelf stable food items between Nov. 2 and 16. This year, 10,352 food and monetary donations were collected.
The Wooble Gooble Team from the Office of Teaching and Learning donated 4,824 items, clenching the first-place title. Human Resources Helping Hands gathered 2,673 items earning the team second place. Third place went to Secondary Instruction’s Moss Potatoes with 1,150 items donated.
This is the seventh year that Starkey staff has held a Thanksgiving food drive to benefit LifeStyles,” Bethany Goodwin, CCPS youth in transition and foster care coordinator, said. “Individual schools and school organizations have been donating money, supplies, clothing, food and other necessities to LifeStyles since the organization's inception in 1998.” LifeStyles has partnered with CCPS for the Summer Meals program, providing meals for children ages 2 to 18, for more than a decade, she added.
About three-fourths of the Thanksgiving donations will go to LifeStyles, an organization founded to assist community members with services such as rent assistance, providing food and clothing, aiding in job searches and providing transportation.
The remaining donations will benefit the CCPS Community Schools program. It connects the school, students, families and surrounding community to resources such as health and mental health services, academic enrichment, out-of-school time programming and adult education classes among other services. Community schools include Dr. Gustavus Brown, Indian Head, Dr. Samuel A. Mudd, J.P. Ryon and Eva Turner elementary schools. Learn more about Community Schools at its site at www.ccboe.com.
The Wooble Gooble Team was led by Stephanie Lawson and included members Tawana Allen, Alicia Briscoe, Stephanie Campbell, Sue Dobbs, Renee Eubanks, Michele Grassinger, Christina Ghrist, Kim Hudler, Meighan Hungerford, Lisa Love, Kevin Lowndes, Kim Schweitzer, Megan Scholten, Beth Sorsby, Alisha Sweatt, Marlene Tewell and Natalie Willett.
The Helping Hands team was led by Michelle Ezzell, John Tompkins helmed the Moss Potatoes team, Hunger’s Heroes was led by Anne Marie Murphy and collected 928 items, Amanda Chapman was the captain of the Team Techsgiving crew which donated 111 items, the team from fiscal services donated 101 items and was led by Deepa Patel, Amanda Kline was team leader from operations and supporting services which collected 100 items and Goodwin was the leader of the team from student services that donated 65 items.
How to help
The Walk to End Homelessness is 8 a.m.-1 p.m., Saturday, Nov. 18. The walk takes places along the Indian Head Rail Trail, beginning from the LifeStyles Center at 10453 Theodore Green Blvd. in White Plains. The registration fee is $25 for adults and $20 for children 12 and younger. For more information, go to https://lifestylesofmd.org/event/2023-walk-to-end-homelessness-in-southern-maryland/.
Charles County Public Schools provides 27,598 students in grades prekindergarten through 12 with an academically challenging education. Located in Southern Maryland, Charles County Public Schools has 37 schools that offer a technologically advanced, progressive and high quality education that builds character, equips for leadership and prepares students for life, careers and higher education.
The Charles County public school system does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age or disability in its programs, activities or employment practices. For inquiries, please contact Kathy Kiessling, Title IX/ADA/Section 504 Coordinator (students) or Nikial M. Majors, Title IX/ADA/Section 504 Coordinator (employees/ adults), at Charles County Public Schools, Jesse L. Starkey Administration Building, P.O. Box 2770, La Plata, MD 20646; 301-932-6610/301-870-3814. For special accommodations call 301-934-7230 or TDD 1-800-735-2258 two weeks prior to the event.
CCPS provides nondiscriminatory equal access to school facilities in accordance with its Use of Facilities rules to designated youth groups (including, but not limited to, the Boy Scouts).