Hamilton School District students, staff and families showed appreciation for the needs of others during the holidays by contributing to charitable organizations and extending acts of kindness within the community and beyond. Following is a summary of activities at each school.
Willow Springs Learning Center
Willow Springs Learning Center four-year-old kindergartners and their families contributed generously to Sussex Outreach Services (SOS) this holiday season. Families and staff collected more than 300 gifts, and students hand-delivered them as a group to St. James Catholic Church where they sang songs before returning to school. The toys and gifts will be distributed within the local community.
Lannon Elementary School
Lannon Elementary School students, families and staff members collected 807 items for the SOS Food Pantry.
Lannon staff sponsored a family of four from SOS for Christmas and generously donated toys, games, household items, gas and grocery gift cards and clothing items to help them this holiday season.
Students decorated 340 paper grocery bags donated by Sussex Piggly Wiggly to be used at the SOS Food Pantry Christmas dinner. Additionally, students made and donated more than 100 sandwiches to Guest House of Milwaukee.
Maple Avenue Elementary School
Maple Avenue students, families and staff members collected 600 items for the SOS Food Pantry.
Maple Avenue staff sponsored a Sussex area family of four for Christmas and generously donated a queen size bed frame and box spring, bedding, food, toys and games, books, kitchen and laundry supplies, clothing, toiletries, grocery and other gift cards to help them this holiday season.
Maple Avenue buddy classes in first and third grades earned money by doing extra work at home. They raised more than $595 to purchase 150 books and book sets for all ages and reading levels that families could enjoy during the holiday season. All books were donated to SOS.
Marcy Elementary School
Kindergarten students are collecting items and donations to benefit Wildlife in Need Center.
First grade classes participated in their annual drive for personal hygiene items, socks and t-shirts to donate to Zablocki Veterans Administration Medical Center. Packages decorated with U.S. symbols include donated items, thank you cards made by students and individual sweet treats. Students also collected non-perishable food items to “Stuff the Gingerbread House” which will be donated to SOS Food Pantry.
Second grade classes conducted a food drive for Menomonee Falls Food Pantry.
Third grade classes will be collecting for families in California who lost items in recent fires.
Fourth grade students are working with SOS to coordinate donations for area families.
Fifth grade led a non-perishable food drive to benefit SOS Food Pantry.
Woodside Elementary School
Kindergartners in Peter Dargatz’s class collected “Dargatz Dollars” for classroom tasks in their “wants and needs” unit. Dollars are turned in for items students wanted and donated to patients in need at Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin. Students and families also signed a giving contract and gave up one holiday want to donate to those in need. Kindergartners will be leading an all-school Children’s Hospital fundraiser in January. An inaugural Cookies & Cocoa for a Cause event was held Dec. 2 raising more than $1,600 for the project. The current class contribution is nearly $2,500.
Kindergarten classes delivered gifts for 96 residents at Serenity Village, an assisted living residence in Slinger. As part of the kindergarten service project, students and their families signed up to provide gifts for individuals at the facility. Gifts were distributed at the residents’ holiday party. This is the eighth year for the service project.
Woodside first, third and fourth grade families brought donations for the SOS Food Pantry to their holiday music performances.
Woodside families and staff members collected $2,000 before Thanksgiving to create turkey tubs filled with groceries for families in need in Milwaukee’s Notre Dame Middle School community for the seventh consecutive year. Woodside students were asked to donate money they earned by doing chores at home. Parent volunteers shopped for groceries to build the tubs. Items included a frozen turkey, bag of stuffing, jar of gravy, sweet potatoes, fresh vegetables, bread, canned cranberries, a fresh pie, beverages, appetizers such as crackers and nuts, along with an aluminum roasting pan. All items were put into 33 large sturdy tubs and delivered to families. A donation of $217 from funds that remained after the tubs were prepared was donated to SOS Food Pantry.
Templeton Middle School
Templeton students participated in Toe-vember, a sock drive organized by Student Council. In total, 561 pairs of women and children’s socks were donated to Hebron House of Hospitality in Waukesha. A competition between houses helped to make the drive an overwhelming success.
Student Council also sold snowflakes and collected donations at the school dance and was able to donate $40 to Hebron House.
Hamilton High School
Hamilton A Cappella, Cantabile and Concert Choirs spread cheer by caroling at Sussex Lioness Club luncheon, Lions Club dinner, Sussex Senior Citizens Christmas Luncheon and Milwaukee’s Third Ward tree-lighting ceremony.
Hamilton’s Synergy Sh ow Choir is raising money for Thirst Project, a non-profit organization that builds clean wells to provide water for villages around the world.
Club Action continued its school supply collection to benefit Hope Center of Waukesha. Club members sold apple cider at Harvest Fest with all proceeds to benefit a selected nonprofit organization. Members have been been active volunteers in community events such as Spooky Sussex and Apple Harvest Festival. Club Action raised funds to support bat conservation efforts and continue to circulate funds through Kiva.org which provides business loans to impoverished women around the world.
Hamilton DECA members shopped for holiday presents for the first grade class at Gaenslen Elementary School in Milwaukee. Gaenslen first-graders completed “All About Me” forms and Hamilton DECA members provided gift bags with at least one nice toy and other inexpensive gifts to these students. Gaenslen is located in a Milwaukee neighborhood that has one of the lowest household incomes in the state. Several first grade students are homeless. In addition to delivering presents, Hamilton DECA took cookies and juice. Hamilton students spent the afternoon of Dec. 14 reading books, putting together new toys and playing with the children for whom they shopped. This has become an annual event for Hamilton DECA and is always a heart-warming experience for students who participate. The advisor and 30 students made the trip.
Hamilton German Club raised money and collected clothing to support individuals and families in need in the Hamilton School District. A club-wide coin drive raised over $125 which was used for purchase of items to be donated to SOS. Items purchased included food pantry items, toiletries, winter outerwear and toys. Hamilton German Club also collected more than 150 articles of clothing that were donated to SOS.
JOI (Junior Optimist International) Club sponsored a school-wide collection of donations for Samaritan’s Purse Operation Christmas Child project. Students and staff donated clothing, school supplies, hygiene products and toys. JOI sponsored a “Pack the Van” Nov. 7 with JOI members, Student Council members and NHS students who assembled 2,000 items in 125 boxes to be sent to South America and Africa.
National Honor Society (NHS) held a community blood drive serving Blood Center of Wisconsin. More than 112 people donated — enough to save 321 local patients in need. Members hosted food drives at Sussex Piggly Wiggly and Pick N Save to benefit SOS the week before Thanksgiving, producing 3,448 pounds of food and $3,275 in donations. NHS sponsored a family in need for the holidays through Christmas Clearing Council of Waukesha.
Charger Robotics Team 537 holds monthly drives for nonperishable food and personal care items to support SOS.
Spanish Club adopted three Hispanic families with a total of 10 children through Waukesha County Christmas Clearing Council. Students in all Spanish classes donated money to purchase gifts for families including winter jackets, clothing, toys, books and gift cards. Spanish Club members wrapped gifts and officers delivered them to families.
Hamilton School Student Council adopted three families through Waukesha County Christmas Clearing Council. Student Council members joined together to shop and wrap gifts. A Spirit of Giving initiative was held in school. Students from all four grade levels were randomly selected to receive a $10 gift card.
Club Unique raised money through a flower sale and donated 100 percent of the profits to Healing Hearts of Waukesha County. Money was able to support this local charity to provide for grieving children and their families.
Offices A, B, C, and Publications – High school staff members adopted two families providing them with many items to brighten their holidays including wrapped gifts of toys, games, clothing, personal items, household goods and gift cards.
District staff members
Staff members throughout the district adopted a family in lieu of exchanging gifts with one another. They provided wrapped gifts of toys, games, clothing, food, personal items, household goods and gift certificates for families in need of support.