The Saint Anne Parish School community has answered the call in a time of need yet again, adding a new twist to the 15th year of their Operation Warm, Fuzzy & Fun service project. The school-wide tradition began with the idea of helping children who might be cold and in need of warm pajamas at Christmas time. This advent season they followed servant leadership habit #3 – which is to Put First Things First by Putting Others First.
They began the December project with the end in mind, which is to warm the hearts and spirits of children who may be cold, lonely, or forgotten. Students were excited as they collected donated items to bring warmth to others in need and it was evident in the results.
Nearly 1,000 items were donated this year, exceeding last year’s 800 item collection. The items include 270 pajama sleepers, 260 stuffed animals, 200 toys and 200 books. Donations went to The Baby Closet PHD, St. Martin de Porres Women’s Shelter, Freeport Pregnancy Center, Loyola Children’s Cancer Center and Lurie Children’s Hospital in Glenbrook.
Saint Anne’s student servant leaders who participated shared these thoughts about what they learned from Operation Warm, Fuzzy & Fun…
“This experience with Operation Warm and Fuzzy has affected my life as a servant leader in ways that are indescribable I am more grateful for the friends and family that I have. I have grown as a person.” – Keeley Starvel
“How has this enhanced the Advent season? As our pastor Father Bernie has said, we are the hands and feet of Jesus which makes us want to go out into the community and help those in need.” – Tessa Carlascio
“As an 8th grader, how has this affected me? Ever since I have been here at Saint Anne this has been a tradition. Now as an 8th grader, I have an important role on the team and it is truly rewarding.” – Liam Schroeder
Operation Warm & Fuzzy continues to grow each year in both interest and donations. The annual initiative is now in the hearts of the SAS student community. In 2001, it was a very simple beginning at a classroom level and the entire student body joined in. It quickly grew to be a school wide service tradition embraced by families.
This year’s Operation Warm, Fuzzy & Fun Team included: Mrs. Sisto, Mrs. Mo, Mrs. Collins, Ms. Johnson, Ms. Larson, Mrs. Leman along with Student Servant Leaders: Tessa Carlascio, Emily Fleming, Nathan Oland, Sophia Peterson, Liam Schroeder, Keeley Starvel, Zosia Stawiarska, MacKenzie Stengel.
Saint Anne Parish School is dedicated to the formation and education of children from preschool through 8th grade in partnership with home, church and community. Located at 319 Franklin Street in Barrington, Illinois, the Saint Anne Parish School community is rich in Catholic values and academic excellence, empowering students to discover their God-given gifts and to use them as leaders of the Church and society. Click here to follow the latest Saint Anne Parish School updates on Facebook or visit their website at StAnneSchoolBarrington.org.