Avonworth’s Red Cross Club is sponsoring a Totes for Hope donation drive through the end of February. Totes for Hope is a Red Cross project that collects personal care items for veterans in need. They package the items into kits and distribute them to homeless and at-risk veterans in Pennsylvania.
The Red Cross Club, newly formed this year by Gbemi Odebode, who is president of the club, must host three events this year in order to continue being a chapter of the Red Cross.
Totes for Hope is their second event for the year. The club initially intended to push the event out for the holidays, however, they extended the deadline, hoping that people might feel more inclined to give once the holiday giving fatigue had worn off.
So far, they have collected fewer donations from the drive than expected: Odebode says they have received “a bit of money and a shaving kit.”
The club “put up posters, sent emails, and put it on the announcements,” so lack of publicity does not seem to be the issue. Gbemi instead attributes the lack of donations to both a “larger Avonworth cultural issue of not doing anything” and people simply being unaware of the Red Cross Club. Still, she and the rest of the club are hopeful they will be able to collect more items through the month of February.
The club has set up two ways to give. They have created an Amazon wishlist of essential items, and are also accepting monetary donations. To buy items from the Amazon wishlist, scan the QR code on posters around the school. To make a monetary donation, write all checks out to Avonworth School District or give cash to Mrs. Barcaskey.