Brooke students help seniors to see

WELLSBURG – Many senior citizens will be seeing more clearly, thanks to the efforts of students at Brooke High School.

Students in the school’s 49 homerooms were asked to collect money for free vision screenings and eyeglasses provided to senior citizens in need through programs supported by Lions International.

Toni Shute, the school’s principal, said the students were encouraged to bring in checks, bills or coins, noting “no amount is too small.”

A pizza party or breakfast at a local fast food restaurant was offered as an incentive for homerooms that raised $150 or more. Shute noted $150 is the amount needed to provide a screening and glasses to one senior.

Eight homerooms reached or exceeded that goal. Their teachers are: Candy Owens, Misty Duvall, Joe Palcic, Nathan Marshall, Karen Keener, Susan Giesmann, Ede Ashworth and Gina Reitter.

John D’Aurora, an officer with the Follansbee Lions Club, said local seniors are among the many who have been aided through the program, with five receiving screenings with the cooperation of Dr. Leon Pendracky of Wellsburg last month.

He said applications for assistance are available at the Brooke County Senior Center at 948 Main St., Follansbee.

Headed by Larry Lee, the Follansbee Lions Club also has collected used eyeglasses at the school and its home football games. The glasses are repaired and distributed to people in need in underdeveloped countries.

Tony Paesano, president of the Follansbee Chamber of Commerce, noted helping the visually impaired is a year-long goal of the Follansbee Lions Club, with particular emphasis during October in observance of Make a Difference Day.

He said the school also will be collecting canned goods and other nonperishable food for local food pantries in support of the chamber’s Make a Difference Day campaign.

Shute said each month the school adopts a different cause in keeping with a particular virtue in the school’s character education program.

Responsibility to others was the theme for September, she said.

Staff also was encouraged to record outstanding acts of responsibility performed by students on slips of paper for a weekly drawing. The winners may choose from a variety of gift cards donated by area businesses, Shute said.

Responsibility to one’s school was to be the theme for October, with the students selling pizzas to raise funds for the school. But the fundraiser will benefit instead the Mozingo family, who lost their home and a daughter, Hannah, in the recent natural gas explosion.

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