Charity Champions: Hardin High School students, community pitch together for enormous food drive

Boxes of food filled a room at Hardin High School during the school's annual canned food drive. (Photo courtesy of Hardin High School)

The tight-knit community of Hardin has demonstrated, yet again, that when a challenge arises, they meet it head-on.

Hardin High School has successfully wrapped up its annual food drive, generating a massive donation amount that has outpaced past accomplishments. This year, the drive gathered 17,949 canned items and a cash collection of $8,404.23.

The feat of community goodwill was organized by Amanda Key, a veteran teacher at Hardin High School, and Hardin High School Student Council. High School Principal Stacey Tucker expressed his sentiments about the Hardin community in a Facebook post.

(Photo courtesy of Hardin High School)

“Hardin truly is a special place. When you grow up in a place, you often don’t treasure or recognize the gift you have. I have had the privilege to live and work in several great places, but Hardin truly is special. We have great kids. We have parents that care. We have a great community that digs deep to give whenever and whatever they can,” Tucker wrote.

The canned goods have been collected over the last few weeks. The final collection day was Wednesday, Nov. 15.

“The morning was a whirl of parents, students, alumni, businesses and even strangers that heard about our event on Facebook. As always, our days are fast paced. At the end of the day, I walked through the classroom where the goods were being sorted. I could not believe the amounts collected. Cans and boxes piled to the ceiling,” Tucker said.

“Today warmed my heart and, I’ll be honest, brought a tear to my eye. Our community, our parents, our businesses, our students, were able to collect almost 18,000 cans and raise an additional $8,000 dollars. Today, I saw the meaning of this event in our students’ faces when the food was delivered. There were tears of joy. Hugs around necks. Almost 800 families have food in their pantries tonight,” Tucker continued.

The food drive would not have been possible if not for the support of a generous community. Everyone chipped in with what they could.

“Some had time. Some had cans. Some had trucks. Some had money. Without each and every student, parent, business, and stranger, this enormous act of kindness, charity, and generosity to others could not have happened,” he said.

Lindsey Smart and her students in the Family and Consumer Science classes oversaw the distribution of the food to area churches and organizations. From there, the food was distributed throughout the Hardin ISD area to families in need.

Here are the distribution points:

  • Helping Hands – 16 families
  • Kids Etc. Daycare – 15 families
  • Centerpoint Church – 15 families
  • Mt. Calvary Baptist Church – 25 families
  • St. John’s Baptist Church – 30 families
  • Workforce Solutions – 30 families
  • Berean Tabernacle – 60 families
  • Trinity River Baptist Assoc. (on behalf of Hardin Baptist, North Main, Heights Baptist and First Baptist Churches) – 120 families
  • Church of Christ – 120 families
  • Rainbow Baptist Church – 240-360 families

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