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NewsDepth A+: May Dugan Center

When I think about my winter break from when I was your age, I remember lying around playing video games, watching TV, and hanging out with my friends. It was a great time! Well, these 7 students, all from Bay Village, decided to get together one Friday afternoon and give back. They spend the day volunteering at the May Dugan Center, located in the Ohio City neighborhood in Cleveland, packing food and clothing for newly arrived refugees from the Middle East, Europe, and Africa, and earning this week’s A+ Award with their hard work.

The families, all of whom recently arrived in the United States, are coming from areas of the world that have been impacted by war, natural disasters like earthquakes or floods, or famine. A famine is when there’s an extreme shortage of food. When the families arrive, they rarely know anyone and usually can’t bring their belongings with them. They have to rely on the kindness of people who donate money, clothing, and things like dishes and toys. They get food from places like the foodbank, or even the United States government.

These students spent a few hours one Friday over break doing all kinds of things to help the families. Elyse told us that she spent most of the morning packing bags of food for the refugees. She explained to us that each family got three bags of food. The food included meat, almonds, a whole lot of vegetables like peppers and potatoes, fruit like lemons and avocados, and some canned goods. She told us that the families are really grateful for the support.

Reese told us that she felt really proud to help out and that it was a great way to get focused for her swim meet that night. We hope you had a great swim meet, Reese!

Sam and his sisters Claire and Anna helped by organizing donated clothing and household goods like plates and cups for the families. They told us that they really thought it was important for the new families to be able to set up their new apartments and houses so they could feel at home.

Michael told us that his favorite part of the day was playing Roblox with Mahdi, who is an eleven-year-old from Afghanistan. The boys used the chat feature as a translator!

NewsDepth is really proud of you! Keep up the great work. This week's A+ Award goes to the May Dugan Center volunteers from Bay Village.

Michael Edelman is the director of education for Ideastream Public Media.