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Williamsville East Food Drive Supports Families in WNY

The Youth Leadership classes of Williamsville East High School sponsored the Annual Thanksgiving Food Drive that supports the Turkey Basket Project, which provides 500 Thanksgiving meals to local families identified by various agencies.  The East community united together and collected a total of 2,612 items.  The Food Drive was a competition between the grade levels as to who could donate the most nonperishable food items, such as vegetables, fruit, cranberry, stuffing, brownie mix and gravy.   The Senior Class won the competition by collecting 530 cans, 155 of those cans were donated by senior Nate Zygaj himself.  Mrs. Mahaney stated, “Nate is a compassionate and caring person who is willing to go out of his way to give to those in need. This is very refreshing to see from a high school student.”

Williamsville East High School has been working with the Turkey Basket Project for over 20 years.  Anne McIlroy, the coordinator of the project stated that Williamsville East is their major contributor of not only nonperishable food items, but also frozen turkeys.  Williamsville East will donate 100 turkeys this year that will be distributed with each meal to families in WNY.  Each family will receive a turkey-basket that includes: a frozen turkey, stuffing mix, cranberry sauce, canned vegetables and fruit, potatoes and a dessert such as a brownie mix.  The Turkey Basket Project works with various agencies such as:  Amherst Senior Centre, Hispanics United of Buffalo, Citizens Community Development Corp, Loaves and Fishes Food Pantry, Journeys End (Refugees), Cornerstone Manor/City Mission, Families Helping Families/Foster Parent Network, Catholic Services, and Jewish Family Services.

This past Friday, twenty-five Youth Leadership students assisted in sorting and preparing bags that will be distributed to families before Thanksgiving.  With Carrying the Torch as East’s school motto, Mrs. Mahaney and her Youth Leadership students are proud to say that their efforts have done just that! Mrs. Mahaney also mentioned two other key contributors this year – Laura Zu and Zekeriya Spoth both spear-headed a collection from their band and orchestra classes bringing in 900 items to the food drive. 

The food drive was a huge success with the student, faculty and support staff uniting together.