Refugee Supply Drive

Students Turn Thoughts Into Action
Posted on 09/24/2018
Students pack supplies for refugee families

Seventh-grade students learned about the power of story in reading Alan Gratz’s book “Refugee” and experienced the power they have to impact the lives of others with a supply drive inspired by the book.

The seventh-grade team at Northbrook Junior High collected two carloads of personal supplies, toys, books, diapers, household cleaners and paper towels to help a refugee family. What started as a goal to collect enough for one locally sponsored refugee family will be enough to actually support 12 to 14 families, Language Arts teacher Mrs. Sarah Avallone said.

Representatives from Refugee One, a non-profit organization based in Chicago, picked up the supplies at the school on Sept. 18. 

Alan Gratz’s book, “Refugee,” tells the story of three different children who became refugees during three different periods in history. “It was chosen for our summer read because of its sophistication, rich literary elements and critical message applicable to today’s world,” Mrs. Avallone said.

Students created a flyer and delivered shopping bags to anyone in the school interested in filling them up with items from a list of needed supplies.

“It was really cool to see how much stuff we all donated and how big of a difference we’re making,” said Max Gutfraynd, a seventh-grade student.

“It would be nice to meet (the family) and see their reaction and maybe next time collect clothes and other necessities,” said Delia Green, also a seventh-grade student.

Some of the 7th grade students who helped organize supplies for a refugee organization