Acts of Kindness Extend Beyond School Boundaries This Holiday Season

During this season of giving, Rochester Community School District (RCS) students, staff and families are leading by example. Through fundraising efforts and acts of kindness, school service groups, clubs, PTAs and volunteers of all ages, are working to make the season brighter for others.

“We are fortunate to belong to a community where compassion and generosity are part of our culture. Our students are truly making a difference. Even small acts of kindness can give hope and inspiration to others in need. The reach of our community’s generosity extends far beyond our district boundaries,” said Superintendent Robert Shaner, Ph.D.

From collecting clothing, blankets, and toy donations, to engaging in food drives and fundraising, Rochester Community School students and staff are embracing opportunities to positively impact hundreds of people in need. Listed below are a sampling of causes that they choose to support.

Clothing Drives and Blanket Donations

Five students stand next to a car with open doors showing it filled to the top with coats

The Key Clubs at both Rochester and Rochester Adams High Schools also donated coats and clothes for Metro-Detroit families

Winter clothing drives and blanket donations help keep local families warm during the cold weather months. The RCS Board of Education challenged the Superintendent’s Cabinet to see who could collect more socks, hats, and mittens for Cass Community Social Services. The Key Clubs at both Rochester High School (RHS) and Rochester Adams High School (RAHS) also donated coats and clothes for Metro-Detroit families, while Baldwin Elementary Student Council donated hats and mittens to the Rochester Area Neighborhood House—a local organization that assists residents during times of hardship. Van Hoosen Super Students supported the Baldwin Center in Pontiac, and several other schools, including McGregor Elementary, University Hills Elementary and Stoney Creek High, made and donated fleece blankets for hospitals across the state through a Fleece and Thank You initiative.

Students make fleece blankets on the gym floor

McGregor Elementary, University Hills Elementary and Stoney Creek High, made and donated fleece blankets for hospitals across the state through a Fleece and Thank You initiative.

Food Drives

Rochester Adams High School conducted its annual “Clash of the Cans,” collecting thousands of cans of food and raising more than $23,000 for local families in need. The Alternative Center for Education (ACE) organized an annual food and toy drive, as did the Adult Transition Services and Programs students and Brewster Elementary who collected 230 pounds of food. Hart Middle provided Thanksgiving meals for local families, and McGregor Elementary provides holiday meals, extra groceries and gifts for 25-30 families in need through Amy’s Helping Hands.

Giving Tree and Toy Donations

Students gather around presents wrapped and ready to go out

Brewster Community Service Kids

Several schools “adopt” families and organize giving-tree donations to provide gifts and clothing. Participants include Brewster Community Service Kids, Brooklands, Delta Kelly, and Hamlin Elementary, Hampton PTA, the Helping Harts Holiday Program, Hugger Elementary PTA, North Hill Elementary Friends Helping Families, Rochester High School Varsity Dance Team, Stoney Creek High, Van Hoosen Middle Student Council, and West Middle School. Groups that benefit from this generosity include the Rochester Area Neighborhood House, pediatric patients at Beaumont Hospital, Peter’s Pals for children in hospitals, and Grace Centers of Hope shelter. Additionally, the National Honor Society at Stoney Creek High School is working with the Caleb White Project to furnish an entire home for a family transitioning out of a homeless shelter.

Students Helping Students

Pre-K families collected 228 new pajamas and teamed up with Scholastic Book Clubs who matched each donation with a new book. This initiative benefits the Great Bedtime Story Pajama Drive, which is dedicated to providing children with a comforting bedtime routine to bring them stability and help them thrive.

Thanks to the Meadow Brook Heroes who delivered more than 23,000 bandages to Beaumont Hospital’s Cancer and Blood Disorder Center, so children who need blood drawn regularly are able to choose from colorful, child-themed bandages. University Hills Elementary made craft kits and donated books for children at Beaumont Hospital.

Kindness rocks at Delta Kelly Elementary, where students painted rocks with inspiring messages and pictures to be placed in a rock garden, built by the staff, so students can find a kind message anytime during the school day.

Students in the Rochester High Art Club and National Art Honors Society created artwork for Jitterz, a coffee shop and mini-enterprise run by the RCS Adult Transition Program and Services, which provides job training for adults with cognitive and physical impairments.

The Adams High School Student Council held a blood drive, collecting 41 pints of blood, which will affect 123 lives. The English National Honor Society at Rochester High School also donated books to COTS in Detroit (Coalition on Temporary Shelter).

Various Nonprofit Organizations

Dan and children stand with stacks of coffee cups in cup holders

Delta Kelly donated money to Dan the Coffee Man, who makes coffee runs for chemo patients and staff at Beaumont Hospital.

Rochester Adams DECA raised $1,400 for the Muscular Dystrophy Association during a Miracle Minute to send children to summer camp. Delta Kelly donated money to Dan the Coffee Man, who makes coffee runs for chemo patients and staff at Beaumont Hospital. Hugger Student Council wrote letters to Santa as part of the Macy’s Believe program, which donates one dollar per letter to the Make-A-Wish foundation for children with terminal illnesses. Several other groups, including Meadow Brook and University Hills, are supporting Beaumont Hospital in Royal Oak as part of the Moonbeams for Sweet Dreams initiative by shining flashlights up to pediatric patients to show support before they go to sleep. The Stoney Creek BuildOn Club does fundraising all year to assist a school in Malawi, Africa. Leader Dogs and the Humane Society received dog toys, kitty condos, blankets and donations from North Hill and University Hills students.

Veteran and Senior Support

Rochester High School’s National Social Studies Honors Society and History Club led three initiatives for veterans and seniors. They collected clothing for the Vietnam Veterans of America, created and delivered holiday cards to a local American Legion and senior center, and hosted a Painting-with-a-Purpose event to create holiday ornaments for residents at the Stoneybrook Senior Living Facility. The Rochester High School Key Club also treated seniors to caroling at Medilodge and the RHS Varsity Dance Team made placemats and treats for Meals on Wheels. Stoney Creek students also provided veterans with gifts and necessities during the holidays, and University Hills Elementary students made holiday cards.

“I have been serving our children in the Rochester Community School District for more than 30 years, and their kindness and generosity never ceases to amaze me,” said Deputy Superintendent for Teaching and Learning Debi Fragomeni. “Each year, our students, staff, and community members come up with new ways to make a difference. They are truly an inspiration.”

About Rochester Media

Rochester Media publishes The Community Edge digital newsletter of recently posted articles from Rochester Media, a hyper-local news outlet covering all things in and around Rochester, Rochester Hills, and Oakland Township. Send us you press releases and news happenings to

Speak Your Mind