West Virginia University Student Organization Services will deliver another season of good cheer for disadvantaged children through the SHOP (Students Helping Other People) and Toy Mountain programs.
The group, along with WVU s Student Government Association and Gamma Beta Phi Honor Society, provides toys and clothes to local kids during the holidays.
“The whole purpose of these programs is to brighten the holidays for those less fortunate,”Melanie Cook of Student Organizations said.”The students really love getting involved.”
Student Organizations hopes to raise $5,000 from the WVU and Morgantown communities to offset the expense of the programs.
SHOP takes place on Saturday, Dec. 8, from 9 a.m. to noon. WVU vans will drop off nearly 100 children, ages 6-12, at Super K-Mart, where they will pick out up to $50 in clothes and toys. Student volunteers will chaperone the youngsters. The program, which has been in place almost 20 years, hopes to pair each child with his or her own WVU student. Sbarros will be donating pizzas for the kids after their shopping spree.
In addition to participating in SHOP , Gamma Beta Phi is donating $2,000 to the SHOP program.
To contribute $45 per child, make checks payable to SHOP and send to: SHOP , Student Organization Services, Mountainlair, West Virginia University, P.O. Box 6444, Morgantown, WV 26506 -6444.
On Monday, Dec. 10, students from WVU and area schools will buy toys from Ames Department Store on behalf of Toys for Tots, a program providing Christmas gifts to area children. That evening the students will construct a”mountain”of toys in the Mountainlair Food Court.
Toy Mountain will be on display in the Lair until 10:30 a.m. Thursday, Dec. 13, when students will present the toys to West Virginia Auditor Glen Gainer, a representative from the U.S. Marine Corps and WVU President David C. Hardesty. The Corps distributes the toys to needy children throughout the state later in the holiday season.
“This is my third year with the program,”said Doug Skaff, event coordinator.”Each year has gotten better. I expect the same this year.”
Students, faculty, staff and community members are encouraged to donate new toys Dec. 11-12 at the Mountainlair.
For more information on the programs, contact Student Organizations at 304-293-4397.