West Virginia University students are looking for help in preparing for the annual Students Helping Other People (SHOP) and Toy Mountain programs to benefit local disadvantaged children this holiday season.

WVU’s Student Organization Services and Student Government Association are collecting financial donations to benefit 80 or more kids ages 6-12 from Monongalia County through mid-December.

On Dec. 12, student volunteers will accompany the children on a “SHOPping” trip to Super Kmart by the Morgantown Mall, where each child can purchase $75 worth of toys and clothes. The children may also purchase presents for mom and dad if they prefer.

The children and student volunteers will be bused from the Mountainlair around 8:30 a.m. There will be photos with Mountaineer mascot Rebecca Durst before the buses leave, and pizza will be provided when the children return.

“SHOP and Toy Mountain are really important because it gives a lot of kids a Christmas that they wouldn’t normally have. We enjoy participating in it every year and benefit a lot of organizations in Monongalia County. This year we hope to raise $15,000, which would be the most we have ever raised,” said Beth Belch, SHOP/Toy Mountain coordinator.

To contribute, send a check payable to SHOP to: SHOP, Student Organization Services, Mountainlair, West Virginia University, P.O. Box 6444, Morgantown, WV 26506-6444.

Toy donations are also needed to build Morgantown’s largest toy mountain in the Mountainlair food court. WVU faculty, staff and students are encouraged to drop off new, unwrapped toys (valued at $5 or more) at the Student Organization Services office in the Mountainlair. The toys will go to the Salvation Army and Christian Help.

Financial and toy contributions will also be collected at the Dec. 5 WVU-University of Charleston basketball game and Dec. 1 Woodburn lighting ceremony.

Student volunteers are needed to accompany the children on their “SHOPping” trip. Anyone interested in volunteering is asked to contact Belch at 304-293-4397.

How has SHOP/Toy Mountain helped to enrich your holiday season?



CONTACT: Beth Belch, SHOP/Toy Mountain