REDMOND, OR -- Redmond students are raising money to help hurricane victims in Texas. Ridgeview High School teacher Ben Parsons says the fundraising campaign started with kids in the AVID college-prep program. "They weren’t really sure what they could do but they want to do something, and we found a way to adopt a school that was severely damaged by Hurricane Harvey."
Parsons says Kingwood High School, outside Houston, was nearly destroyed and its students are now attending class in split-shifts at a nearby high school. "Their sports are all disrupted; it sounds like it’s kind of chaos but they’re making it work the best they can. But, they’re going to have to do that all year because their school will not be fixed in time for the end of the school year." Click HERE
to watch a YouTube video on the school's damage. Parsons tells KBND News, "In the school of 2600 kids, about 1700 of the homes were destroyed. So, well over half of the kids are without a home and they’re also without a school right now. So, it’s a really, really tough situation for those kids and for those families."
Ridgeview students will collect cash donations this week, as part of homecoming, "We’re trying to raise as much money as possible to buy essential supplies for the kids. A lot of the stuff was lost, obviously, in the hurricane. So, we’re going to buy backpacks and binders and pencils, as well as just straight cash directly to the school." Parsons acknowledges it's a short timeline, but says, "We want to get the money to them so they can start using it now. I mean, they need these supplies now."
The fundraiser isn't just for Ridgeview students. "Anyone can contribute who wants to," says Parsons. "If you stop by Ridgeview, we have containers for collections right at the front office, staff’s already donating pretty generously, we’ve had the public coming into our office who will throw some money in the jar."
Earlier this week, Redmond Proficiency Academy held a coin drive and gathered supplies to send to Harvey victims in Texas, as well.
UPDATE (10/5/17) -- Ben Parsons reports the Ridgeview High School effort raised a total of $2,600 to help students at Kingwood High School in Texas.