As the holiday season rolls around, many people focus on finding gifts for loved ones, spending time with friends and getting a break from work or school. For some people around Winston- Salem, however, the only thing on their mind is getting food and finding a warm place to sleep. Reynolds is trying to help these people.
Reynolds Key Club has been doing a canned food drive for over 80 years and this year was no exception. Over 8,000 cans were collected by Reynolds teachers and clubs alone. A few years after Reynolds High School opened, the boys’ service club started a food drive.
Over time, many other Reynolds clubs joined them and eventually it became a school-wide effort that has gained publicity all over North Carolina, encouraging others to do the same. All the collected cans are donated to Crisis Control, an organization in Winston-Salem whose goal is to assist people in helping them meet essential life needs and become self-sufficient.
“This event means a lot to us because you guys provide food that is used by people in crisis here in Forsyth County. Your 8,000 food items allow us to serve 372 people with a two-week supply of food,” Corey Miller, director of philanthropy at Crisis Control Ministry, said. The holiday season is a time where places like Crisis Control get a lot of donations. Around 40% of all donations come in around the holidays.
“I think the canned food drive makes a huge impact on the community around Winston-Salem. During the holidays, it’s even harder for families to eat regularly but with the Reynolds canned food drive more and more people are going through their daily lives not starving,” senior Lizzie Irvin said. Irvin is a co-president of Girls’ Council at Reynolds, the club who collected the most cans this year.
There is a competition between teachers and clubs to collect the most cans in order to encourage everyone to want to collect more. The collection of cans helps many people around Winston-Salem. Especially as it gets colder, being well fed is important for the health and well-being of the people in the city.
“The Reynolds canned food drive has been around so long because of the lasting impact Reynolds as a whole has made on the community. It’s hard for any other school in our county to have such an outstanding tradition,” Irvin said.
The tradition has a deep effect on the community in a very positive way and a generous way for Reynolds to give to those in need. It has been a tradition for decades and will hopefully continue in order to give those in need the help and support that they require to get through the long winter months to come.
“I feel like I personally am making a difference in my community. Even though it’s a small thing to do when everyone comes together, it can make a huge difference.” said Irvin.