I got this in my world vision e-newsletter and thought I’d share it to encourage our friend (who is soon to be sporting big hair, a big hat, and a big belt buckle).
Texas: Lesson in Dedication
Teachers Brave Freezing Conditions for Pupils
More than 400 Fort Worth teachers lined up at 4:00 a.m. on a Saturday morning, in freezing conditions, to pick up free Christmas gifts and school supplies for their needy pupils.
Fort Worth middle school teacher Elsa Cavarrubias was the first in line for the World Vision distribution, held at the Fort Worth Coca-Cola bottling plant. She came despite a rare arctic blast that caused temperatures to drop 50 degrees below normal in North Texas.
Elsa said she teaches in a school where the majority of parents donâ€™t have the funds to provide even basics like pencils and notebooks for their children.
â€œI was so excited. I wanted to be the first in line. I came last year and everything I received I was able to use,â€ she said.
Itâ€™s the Most Difficult Time of the Year
Fellow teacher Cynthia Renteria said Christmas could be a particularly difficult time for struggling parents.
â€œParents are struggling to put a few presents around the tree and just donâ€™t have extra money for school supplies.â€
Coca-Cola employee Bob Challis added: â€œI am volunteering here today because teachers just donâ€™t get enough support. My wife, two daughters, and son-in-law are all teachers. I know how hard they work and how little they get,â€ he said.
Goods were trucked to the Coca-Cola Plant from World Visionâ€™s Storehouse in Dallas to allow easy access for teachers from Tarrant County. They included school and office supplies, games and toys to be used in lessons and as rewards for good work or behavior.
Donor companies included Coca-Cola, Avery Dennison, JoAnn Fabrics & Crafts, Boise Paper and Hasbro.
The supplies are available at no charge to teachers who work in schools where at least 70 percent of students qualify for free or subsidized lunches.
World Vision Texas director Cassandra Wyssbrod said without the Storehouseâ€™s assistance, teachers would be collectively faced with spending hundreds of thousands of dollars of their own money to meet the needs of their students.
Last year World Visionâ€™s 11 Storehouses around the country distributed about $7.4 million worth of products at Christmas â€” benefiting nearly 250,000 children. The organization expects to distribute a similar amount this year.