LA PORTE, Ind. – For the past four years, the Indiana/Kentucky/Ohio Regional Council of Carpenters (IKORCC) has been partnering with local elementary schools to promote volunteerism and giving back to the community through its Kids Caring for the Community service program. Participating schools throughout Northwest Indiana complete service projects and are entered in a drawing to receive a monetary award as recognition for their community service.
Each year, Kids Caring for the Community awards $9,000 total to participating elementary schools in Lake, Porter and LaPorte Counties. One winner from each county is chosen. There are four total Kids Caring for the Community sessions throughout the academic year, giving local elementary schools multiple opportunities to be selected as winners.
Local 1485 IKORCC Representative John Carr is proud to see the IKORCC families involved in the program. "Many students participating in the Kids Caring for the Community program are children of IKORCC members," said Carr. "It is so rewarding to know the impact this program will make for many generations to come. When we teach our children to serve, we know the results will be far-reaching."
LaPorte County schools that participated in Session 1 include Crichfield Elementary, Westville Elementary, Indian Trail Elementary, Kingsford Heights Elementary, Knapp Elementary and Rolling Prairie Elementary.
Last month, Crichfield Elementary was selected in a blind drawing of participating schools as the Session 1 winner for LaPorte County. As their service project, students collected pop tabs for the Ronald McDonald House. The Ronald McDonald House supports families of children being treated for cancer and other serious illnesses or trauma while the child receives treatment at a nearby hospital or medical treatment center. To reach their goal of collecting 100 gallons of pop tabs this school year, students made posters and gave speeches about their service project.
Donna Biggs, Principal of Crichfield Elementary School, was thrilled to see the kids' hard work being recognized. "Our student council and K Kids Club are very active in the community, and we love helping the students get excited about giving back." Biggs said the school plans to use the awarded funds for a Buddy Bench for their playground, which is a place where students can go when they don't have anyone to play with. The goal of the bench is to eliminate loneliness and encourage friendship on the playground. Additionally, Crichfield Elementary will be starting a Striders Club in the spring to promote more physical activity.