Clubs give back for the holiday season

By Erick Yanzon

Halfway through November, the MTHS annual canned food drive started. The tournament itself was dubbed “Munch Madness” this year, based off of college basketball’s “March Madness.”
It is a single-elimination tournament pitting third period classes against one another. Each class tried to collect more canned food and other monetary donations than their assigned opponent, which had been posted on a huge sports-style bracket between the two locker rooms. The class that had the greater numbers of cans each round advanced to the next round.
Although classes were eliminated throughout the competition, they still could bring cans and team up with another class still in the competition.
The class that received the trophy and had the doughnut party by having the greatest amounts of cans that reached well over 1,000 was Kimberly Nelson’s Personal Finance class.
There were rumors that Nelson gave money and cans to win, but it is not true because her students were the ones who stood outside of grocery stores to collect cans and even gave up their own lunch money.
The whole class was really determined to win and to help the community, and Nelson was their motivation.
The food drive is part of the annual PPP event (Pursuit of the Power Plunger) that Mountlake Terrace competes against rival Lynnwood Royals.
The Royals have defeated Terrace for the past couple of years, but this year, Terrace beat the Royals by having 11,195 cans while Lynnwood only had 8,880 cans.
Overall, it’s not so much about the competition, but more about helping other people.
“What makes me feel good is to help someone else feel good, like the food drive. It felt good to know that someone else won’t be hungry because I brought something for them to eat,” said Stephen Cuplin, freshman.
All of the canned food and monetary donations collected will be donated to the local food bank in the community.

Key club is an International club system that is supported by the Kiwanis Clubs. The club was established four years ago by a former student, Rachel Pendergraft, and their adviser, Kimberly Nelson.
“I don’t know why they call it ‘Key’ Club. Probably because service to others is key to being a productive and responsible citizen,” says Nelson.
The main goal of the club is community service and they have one project a month. This year, the club has forty active members, and they now meet after school instead of the before school meet during tutorial from the past years.
This holiday season, they rocked the canned food drive for Thanksgiving by collecting 2,025 cans of food in one day while standing outside of Albertsons.
Right now, they are working on Adopt-A-Family, which is a project wherein the members are to choose a gift to get that the parents of the families requested for their kids, so that they can still celebrate their Christmas season regardless of being homeless.
They will have their big holiday wrapping party on Dec. 15, then deliver all of the presents to the families. Thus far, they have already adopted four families. The project is being led by Kara Cundy as her Senior Project.
FCCLA (Family, Career & Community Leaders of America) is the only in-school organization with family as its central focus, and which participates both in-service projects and strives to educate the community about issues that impact individuals and families.
“This is different than Key Club, which is a more general community service organization. Our club also provides leadership opportunities through STAR Events (Students Taking Action with Recognition).  This year will be our first year participating in STAR Events,” said Jessica Walton, adviser.
On December 1, they began a toiletry drive to benefit the Heroes for the Homeless organization. They are going to collect this by standing outside of grocery stores possibly Fred Meyer and QFC, and then donating them.
Last year, they had a very successful Pillow Case Drive, which provided enough material for over 100 dresses to be made by the Fashion Design students and sent to Africa for little girls in need.
“We are continuously involved in projects and activities that better the community. Students can definitely list FCCLA as a club on their resumes for college and for extra curricular activities and you get ‘cords’ at graduation, but the main goal is to better the community and yourself and to learn to become a leader for the future,” says Jasla James, President.
FCCLA provides leadership skills and community service opportunities for any students enrolled, or previously enrolled, in a Family and Consumer Science class.