The Oak Knoll community participated in a variety of outreach projects and collections to honor the spirit of Christmas.
"It’s a chance to make Christmas a little brighter for those who struggle each and every day," said Kathleen Lynch, Upper School theology teacher.
In collaboration between the Upper and Lower Schools, sixth grade peer leaders decorated Christmas ornaments to be donated to the New Community Shelter in Newark.
In the Lower School, students participated in several projects including:
· A food collection to aid those impacted by Hurricane Sandy
· Making bagged lunches and collecting toiletries for Bridges Outreach
· The Girl Scouts' food basket outreach for Sacred Heart
· Faculty and staff donated $2 to wear jeans on Denim Day on December 20. The profits purchased the food cooked by the sixth graders at Homeless Solutions
· The fourth grade made no sew baby blankets in conjunction with the Christ Child Society in Summit to be donated to newborns in need at Overlook and Morristown Medical Centers
· The sixth graders joined up with their kindergarten buddies to make scarves for people in need at Homeless Solutions
In the Upper School, each grade focused on a specific cause:
· Students in grade 7 donated new pajamas for children living in shelters served by Bridges
· Grade 8 donated personal items for senior citizens served through the New Community Corporation Social Services
· Grade 9 purchased gifts for children at the New Community Corporation Social Services
· Grade 10 donated toys to children living in shelters served by Bridges Outreach
· Grade 11 made gift bags for women and young children living in shelters in Essex County sponsored by Babyland Family Services
· Grade 12 made similar gift bags for women or young children residing at Providence House in Brooklyn
Faculty and staff also gave back this holiday season by participating in several of these service projects and by also donating gift cards to Pathmark for senior citizens served by New Community.
Campus ministry also sponsors the Advent Angel program whereby students pick the name of another classmate for which they are secretly an angel. Each student writes a secret note, performs "acts of kindness," and gives a secret candy treat to her Advent Angel. Instead of buying her angel a gift, each student makes a donation to one of two charities in honor of her advent angel: Several Sources or the Holy Child Mission in the Dominican Republic. The identity of each angel is revealed before Christmas Break.
"As a Holy Child school we are blessed to be able to celebrate the coming of our God as a gentle baby," Mrs. Lynch said. "The generosity of our God in sending his Son is the inspiration of our own generosity to others in our gift giving and donations to people in need both locally and globally."
Oak Knoll School of the Holy Child is an independent Catholic school enrolling boys and girls in kindergarten through grade six; and young women only in grades seven through 12. For more information about Oak Knoll, please visit www.oakknoll.org or call 908-522-8109.