The spirit of Christmas made its way to Carson High School on Monday when students in Cheryl Macy's class wrapped gifts for a family of five they adopted through Advocates to End Domestic Violence.
"We don't know much about them," said Macy, who teaches English. "Usually we know their size, their age and their favorite color and what's on their wish list."
This year, due to the "generous" donations of Macy's students, more than 40 gifts were brought in for the four children in the family and their mom, and more than $300 was raised. The money was used to buy a Christmas dinner and a gift card for the family and wrapping paper for all those gifts.
"I'm always shocked about how generous the kids are," Macy said. "And it seems to me that the kids who can afford it least give the most. I don't know if it's because they can relate or what it is, but overall I'm so impressed how much the kids gave and how concerned they are about wanting to make it a good Christmas."
Students in all four of Macy's Advanced Placement English classes donated change in the last few weeks and brought in gifts for one of the family members.
"We kind of brought in stuff that matched the description of what people wanted," said Christy Lin, 16, a junior, who wrapped a tiny package of bubble-gum tape for the 10-year-old girl in the family. "We brought in so much stuff for the one girl that the other people didn't have that much stuff, so we ended up bringing in more things for the other kids."
Each of the classes adopted one of the children. For the 10-year-old girl, gifts included jewelry, makeup and Lil' Bratz Dolls.
"All the kids got everything they asked for, so that's a good accomplishment there," said Shirley Diaz, 16.
Only on Monday did students learn the first names of the children in the family so they could place name tags on the gifts. They signed the tags "Frosty," "Mrs. Claus," "Rudolph" and the like.
"I think (the family) is going to have a good Christmas," said Kaitlin Scharmann, 17. "They're going to have a lot of presents and a good dinner, and I think it will be a good Christmas."
The gifts will be delivered to Advocates to distribute to the family. The turkey dinner at Albertsons includes all the fixings.
"(The mother will) have a receipt for the dinner and she can just go get it on Christmas day," Macy said. "It's the full-on spread - a turkey, mashed potatoes, gravy ..."
Tyko Cvar, 16, said he enjoyed adopting the family because it was done as a group effort.
"It's about everyone being one as a class and contributing and making something bigger than what we can put in as individuals," he said.
n Contact reporter Maggie O'Neill at firstname.lastname@example.org or 881-1219.