The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

October 31, 2013

Halloween delivery: Students take holiday donations to Janet Weis

By Robert Stoneback
The Danville News

— DANVILLE — Ten boxes filled with Halloween-themed toys were delivered to patients at the Janet Weis Children’s Hospital, care of students at Danville’s e-Learning Cyber Academy.

Students had placed boxes to collect gifts, including crayons, stickers, glow in the dark bracelets, Play-Doh and stuffed toys, in their classroom at the Danville Middle School as well as in each of the other four schools in the district. Each school collected two boxes worth of gifts, according to Jen Gurski, principle of the cyber academy.

The gifts collected will be passed out to patients later this week and there will be enough to last several months, said Sarah Hoffman, a child life specialist at Janet Weis.

“We greatly appreciate your donation,” Hoffman told cyber school students who dropped off some of the gifts at the hospital at 1 p.m., Tuesday. Other boxes of donations were delivered earlier that day.

“It gives them (the patients) something to do, something to play with. It creates normalcy in the hospital environment,” Hoffman said. “It helps out our kids and families greatly.”

The students had chosen to collect the gifts as their monthly service project for October.

“Halloween’s a fun holiday,” junior Nick Chappell said.

“Everyone deserves a treat,” senior Tristen Weaver said.

“Halloween is one of the most exciting holidays. … And one everyone should experience as a kid,” said freshman Dana Blaine.

Halloween greeting cards were also created for the patient by cyber school students and Danville High School students.

“I’m really proud of our kids and district for being involved in our community,” Gurski said.

The cyber academy’s next community project is making bookmarks adorned with patriotic images and messages to give to veterans on Veteran’s Day.

Danville’s e-Learning Cyber Academy, which opened this school year, currently has 24 students attending from grades six through 12.