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PJ Day and Elf highlight final day of semester, Dec. 14

Kaylie Clem | The Feather Online

Share a treat with a friend but make plans to bring a stuffed animal to donate to Valley Children’s Healthcare, Dec. 14. (Left to right) seniors Ashley Zamarripa, Alina Ochoa and Sophia Kalugin share a snack in last year’s event.

Six years and counting, FC hosts a stuffed animal drive and Pajama Day on the last day of school, Dec. 14. Everyone who brings in a new stuffed animal, (thrift store not accepted), receives a free Chick-Fil-A nugget meal and can watch “Elf” in the Student Ministries Center (SMC). The stuffed animals are donated to Valley Children’s Healthcare and goes to patients who have an operation or surgery scheduled or are recovering from one.

Three trash bags full of stuffed animals were donated to Valley Children’s Healthcare from Fresno Christian last year. The new goal is to donate one stuffed animal from each campus high school student, which is 206.

Leadership student Blake Burdan, ‘20, gives insight on putting together the stuffed animal drive.

“Leadership put together a stuffed animal drive to donate stuffed animals to children in Valley Children’s Hospital,” Burdan said. “This will give many young children in Valley Children’s a stuffed animal as a gift. Leadership does this every year because it’s a great way to give gifts to children and it’s something that everyone can participate in.”

In the following podcast, Mackenzie Beckworth talks to sophomores Caleigh Alday and Samantha Portale about the stuffed animal drive.

Senior Landon Goldsborough gave a stuffed animal last year, providing why he did and recalls his last year Pajama Day experience.

“I would encourage others to donate a stuffed animal because it’s a huge blessing to a child at the hospital,” Goldsborough said. “It’s super rewarding to know that you can impact someone in that way through something so small. Last year’s Pajama Day was really fun and cozy, and it was nice to relax and watch a Christmas movie with friends while eating some good food.”

Kaylie Clem | The Feather Online

Dress down for the last day of school before Christmas break, Dec. 14. Wear your favorite Pjs, bring a stuffed animal and watch Elf.

Student leadership co-advisor, Aubri Foster, is coordinating the drive with Robert Foshee for the second time this year.

“This drive is more than just lunch and a huggable,” Foster said. “We are really giving joy to children who have been hurting. Sometimes staying in the hospital for an extended period of time can be rough, but when a child receives a stuffed animal from us, they are also getting prayed for as well. Leadership will pray over the animals before we send them off to the hospital. I am most looking forward to that time of prayer.”

This year Megan Raynes, ‘19, plans to donate a stuffed animal and gives her reasoning as to why as well as urges others to do the same.

“I’m planning on donating a stuffed animal because I know what it’s like being in the hospital and receiving a stuffed animal,” Raines said. “It brought joy when there wasn’t really anything to be happy about. I would tell people that they should donate a stuffed animal because it may not mean a lot to you but a child who may be fighting for their life will cherish that forever.”

Dec. 15 is the deadline for the stuffed animal drive. The Feather and student leadership encourage the student body to make a donation and impact a life for pediatric patients at Valley Children’s Healthcare. Please consider donating one!

For information on last year’s drive, read PROMO: Student leadership hosts annual stuffed animal drive. For recent articles, read Teen struggles: The fear of failure or The Third Target offers suspense, while exposing ISIS’ plan.

Connor Jens can be reached via email.

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