The Bossier Sheriff’s Office “Spirit of Christmas” baskets got a big boost from the schools in Bossier Parish, in particular Haughton Elementary, as their students went beyond expectations in the annual food drive. Classroom after classroom filled the barrels provided by the Sheriff’s Office with canned goods and non-perishable items that will go to help feed the less fortunate residents of our community. There was so much food donated by the students that it took deputies two trips to pick it all up.
“This is a great way for them to learn how to help others especially during this pandemic,” said Andrea Spinney, school principal. She said there will be a pizza party for the class that donates the most. “Maybe that’s why they gave so much. I’m just glad they are learning to give.”
In total, the students donated 4,822 canned goods to this year’s food drive. Additionally, photos from Elm Grove Elementary showed their giving spirit as they donated 846 canned goods from one class and 683 from another. All Bossier Parish Schools participated in the food drive.
Bossier Sheriff’s Sgt. Tina Fruge helps coordinate the Sheriff’s Office Operation Blessing Food Pantry, and she is so grateful for the support thus far from this one-month long drive. “We have enough items to help prepare 500 boxes for our Spirit of Christmas Baskets.” She says what’s left will help fill the shelves in the food pantry which helps to feed needy families throughout the year.
“I’m so proud to see young people getting it, and parents and grandparents joining in,” Sheriff Whittington said. “They are learning what it means to consider others and help someone else when they could use a ‘hand up’. Because of students like this, we are blessed to live in a parish with such caring people.”
The Spirit of Christmas basket giveaway began in 1998. The program relies on year-round support from businesses, organizations, and individuals. The program also provides food to about 200 families each week throughout the year. More than 70 barrels of food items have been collected in this year’s drive.
Donations of canned goods and non-perishable food items continue at Bossier Parish Schools, the substations on Viking Drive and ART, the Criminal Building on Burt Blvd., as well as the Bossier Parish Courthouse. Please drop off your donations during normal operating hours. Your support means families can enjoy a hearty meal this Christmas and into 2021.