For Hometown News
Students in the Halifax Health-Behavioral Services Day Treatment Program are learning valuable life skills while raising funds for nonprofit organizations, including UNICEF, the Halifax Humane Society and the American Cancer Society.
"While the students at Halifax Health-Behavioral Services are here to work on their own issues, they are also learning about giving back and helping others. The act of collecting and giving for a good cause made our students realize that others are in need of assistance," explained Marlene Rockwell, ESE/Virtual Teacher for Behavioral Services.
In October, the students in the Day Treatment Program conducted their first fundraiser. The students raised funds for UNICEF from staff at both the Halifax Health main campus in Daytona Beach and at the Behavioral Services facility during their Trick or Treat for UNICEF Halloween party.
Two Behavioral Services instructors decided to continue teaching the students the importance of helping others with additional projects. Marlene Rockwell, a high school teacher, and Tara Hammond, who teaches elementary-aged students, worked together to create a program that would raise funds for the humane society. The teachers contacted Home Depot, which donated planting pots and saucers, paint, potting soil and gift cards to purchase materials for their fundraising project. The students went on to paint and decorate the pots and saucers, and seed the plants, to sell to Behavioral Services staff. The money collected from the plant sale was donated to the Humane Society.
"Collecting and donating to help pets find forever homes and to assist with their medical needs is also important because pets are an important part of a family," Ms. Rockwell said.
Middle school teachers Joe Czajkowski and Steve Sims encouraged their students to make and sell popcorn to Behavioral Services staff members as a fundraiser for the American Cancer Society. The middle school students created signs and assisted with making and bagging the popcorn, which included M&M's and other sweets. So far, the students have earned more than $100 dollars from popcorn sales for the Cancer Society.
"Our students are extremely proud of their accomplishments and have learned new skills to assist them throughout their lives, such as creating a school-based enterprise like selling popcorn and making creative items to sell," Ms. Rockwell said, adding, "In addition, the students have learned to work together in teams; take pride in their creations; and the importance of giving back to their community."
For more information on Behavioral Services, visit halifaxhealth.org/behavioral-services.