Middle school students lead clothing drive to help children in foster care

SILVIS, Illinois - Students at Eagle Ridge Middle School in Silvis, Illinois are taking big strides to help children in foster care.

Students across the middle school sorted through more than 4,000 clothing items all to help other children in need.

The school started taking donations on Monday, October 22, 2018 after a couple of students pitched the idea to host a clothing drive.

Seventh graders, Autumn Stephens and Daymian Oguike, were challenged by their teacher to create their own community service class project. Both students say they knew they wanted to help others.

"We didn't really think we were going to get too many just cause we're a small school," Stephens said. "We're not as big as many schools around us. But, from the outcome, it's a lot more than we thought we were going to get."

Seventh grade Eagle Ridge teacher, Caitlin Eyth, said she is shocked a small amount of students could make such a big impact.

"We do have many children here who have been impacted themselves by the foster care system," Eyth said. "Either being in it at some point or knowing someone who has. So I think they really identify with kids. And like I said, they want to help kids their own age."

Donated clothing will be taken to QC Closet to Closet, an organization that gives used clothing to kids in foster care. Donated toys will be given to the Child Abuse Council to give to children who have been removed from their homes.