Some Dublin school students learned a lesson about helping their peers Wednesday. Now, thanks to them and other volunteers, some of their peers will have an extra gift under the Christmas tree. Yvonne Thomas shares the lessons learned at the sixth annual Secret Santa Bicycle Giveaway.
It's not your normal in class assignment. To ace this service project, students are challenged to think with their heads and with their hearts. “Everything that you see is donated,” said Lori Williams, Homeless Liaison for Dublin City Schools. “We have 101 bicycles.”
They're giving away presents for peers in the Dublin City School District. “It felt really good knowing that you'll help make some kids Christmas better this year,” said Jasmine Deese, Dublin High School student. “We take our neediest families and the staff at each school chooses who receives the bikes,” said Williams.
It's a project Williams started six years ago to teach her students how to pay it forward during the holidays. “Mrs. Williams is an excellent teacher. She's always gives back. She always encourages us to do more,” said freshman Jaylon Georges. The holiday season can be a bumpy ride for some. “Growing up, you can see that some kids had stuff and other kids didn't,” said Junior Chicago Patterson.
But delivering bikes to parents on Wednesday morning brings smiles across the community, teaching these students that even that even the smallest gift can make this Christmas bright. “It brings joy to others to see that they'll have something special for Christmas,” said junior Michelle Mitchell. “All of us came together as one, and I want to do it again next year.”
Jason Halcombe with the district says Dublin City Schools has a poverty rate more than 90 percent, and this is just one of the ways they choose to help the student population.