JPS Elementary School Students Help Out Relay For Life

Jamestown elementary art students at Lincoln and Fletcher Schools recently helped out the American Cancer Society’s Relay For Life of Southern Chautauqua County by decorating luminaries with a message in honor of someone they knew who has, or had, cancer. Students could also give a message of hope for someone battling the disease. The bags were displayed at the Relay For Life on June 3rd. Over 200 JPS students created bags and donated $765. The Relay for Life of Southern Chautauqua County raised over $50,000.

JPS School Secretary and Relay For Life Co-chair, Wendy Ohmneiss, contacted art teachers, MaryGrace Anderson and Molly Woodfield, to see if they would like to participate in the program.

“It seemed like a great way of getting the kids involved as so many have lost a grandma, grandpa, friend, neighbor, or even a parent, to cancer,” said Mrs. Ohmneiss. “They may have someone who survived cancer or is battling it now. They feel helpless and this gives them a way of sharing their loss, love, and/or support. It was so awesome to see the bags that the children decorated.  They drew beautiful pictures and wrote things like, ‘Cure Cancer’, ‘I miss you Papa’, ‘Feel better’, etc.  You could tell how each one was made with love and caring.”

Mrs. Anderson agrees that the project gave the students a positive way to help others.

“I hesitated doing it at first because it was a topic that I thought might be hard for young children to face, but they enjoyed doing it because they knew they were helping other people,” said Mrs. Anderson. “Whether they were helping by sending messages of hope to a stranger or whether they were helping their families remember a loved one, they really ended up taking the project to heart. The students surprised me in how excited they were to help others. Whether it was $40, $5, 50 cents, or a bag full of pennies, all of the donations were brought in with pride and enthusiasm.”

posted on 06/22/2016 - filed under: Art, Community, Elementary School, Spotlight, Students