WELLSBURG - Two Brooke High School groups teamed up to make Christmas brighter for local children in need.
Members of the school's chapters of Health Occupation Students of America and Future Educators of America raised money to purchase toys for children in families aided by the Brooke County Salvation Army.
The gifts were selected from Christmas wishes posted on the Salvation Army's angel trees.
WORKING TOGETHER — Students in Brooke High School’s chapters of Health Occupation Students of America and Future Educators of America purchased and donated gifts for children in need at Christmas. Involved were, from left, front, Salvation Army volunteers Doug Hervey and Kenneth Hart, HOSA adviser Audrey Kocher, Shayna Baker, Kayla Weaver, Desirrae Wells, Ashley Graziano, Jonnielynn Krieger, Kelsey Hardesty, Mackenzie Burns, Caitlynn Clark and Adrianna Stevens, and, back, Kylie Toner, Terri Guseman, Jentzen Kowcheck, Kylie Royal, Logan Lojszczyk, Megan Lancaster, Alyssa Rice, Madison Manack, Erica Vanderpool and Abbie Carpenter.
HOSA is comprised of students interested in careers in the health care field who have gained firsthand experience through local assisted care facilities and other workplaces.
FEA members are students in the school's careers in education courses, which are designed to prepare them for work in schools and childcare centers. Many also gain field experience through the preschool program at the high school.
Audrey Kocher, HOSA chapter adviser, said about $3,300 in the toys were purchased at the Weirton K-Mart, which aided the effort through the K-Mart Kares program, which offers approved charitable causes a 10 percent discount on their purchases. For many years the school's careers in education students have purchased toys for the Salvation Army under the direction of Diane Lucero.
Lucero, who is retiring this year, encouraged the students to purchase toys that encouraged creativity, teamwork and physical fitness.