Wrapping for the Needy

by Lauren Hodson

The Simpson campus is joining together in the spirit of the Christmas holiday. Members of the Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA) are spreading the joy of giving by organizing a campus wide opportunity for organizations and clubs to donate gifts for children in need.

“There are fundraisers held by one organization, but this fundraiser is made possible by the entire campus which makes it unique,” said junior and PRSSA member Rachel Smith.

Senior and President of PRSSA Pat Tierney contacted a non-profit organization called Mentor Iowa in Des Moines, Iowa, sharing interest in becoming involved in the services they provided.

“Mentor Iowa is such a great organization helping countless kids in our communities,” Tierney said. “It has really been great working with them.”

Through the Mentor Iowa program, PRSSA is providing Christmas gifts for Central Iowa children who have faced neglect, abuse and for delinquent children under the jurisdiction of the Juvenile Court.

“It brings tears to my eyes to imagine children waking up Christmas morning and not having any gifts,” freshman Annie Hills said.

After receiving wish lists from each of the children, PRSSA had a goal of providing at least one gift for each child.

“I’m excited that PRSSA is providing gifts for children in need this holiday season because those children would not otherwise have holiday gifts,” Hills said.

As college students, the financial situation of each of the PRSSA members would make it difficult for the group to purchase each of the gifts on the wish lists. In response, PRSSA has branched out to the entire Simpson campus.

“This cause is something to bring the whole campus together,” Smith said.

Members of PRSSA matched up gifts from the wish lists with relating organizations and clubs on campus. For example, listed items such as running shoes and other athletic items were paired with athletic organizations on campus. The sororities were contacted about items on girls’ lists such as an Easy-Bake Oven.

“I think this is a great way for Simpson PRSSA to help our community this holiday season so that the children have a Merry Christmas,” Hills said.

This project has ignited a chain of charity connecting the Simpson campus to the entire community.

“I think every little bit helps around the holidays and I really believe that when the Simpson Community organizes for a great cause like this, great things can happen,” Tierney said.