Forest City, Iowa – As temperatures started to drop in recent weeks, members of the Education Club at Waldorf College discovered they weren’t the only ones cold.
“Education students working with children in area schools noticed the need for warm winter clothing,” explained Education Club Advisor and Assistant Professor of Education Sheila Willms. Emily Clausen, Education Club President, remembered the mitten tree at her childhood church and suggested the club create its own tree as a way to help those kids. “Everyone thought it’d be great and jumped on board,” said Clausen.
Since the beginning of November, the club has been gathering hats, gloves, scarves, and socks to give to area children in need of warm winter clothing. These items now hang from a Christmas tree in Waldorf’s Louise V. Hanson Library. Those in need may pick something from the tree during regular library hours. All of the items are free.
The winter clothing items were either purchased with monetary donations the club received from local businesses or donated by businesses and community members. Some businesses donated non-clothing items, which will be raffled off this week. Proceeds from the raffle will be used to purchase additional hats and gloves to adorn the mitten tree.
“When we put the tree up, it was completely covered in hats and gloves that were purchased with donations or were donations. It was really heartwarming to see how much our community cares and is willing to help each other,” said Clausen.
Donations of new winter accessories can be placed on the tree in the library until Thursday, December 6.
The tree will be on display until December 7, when remaining items will be delivered to the Forest City Elementary School for distribution to children in the district.
Waldorf’s Education Club focuses on involving all education majors in campus activities, including leadership, community service projects, and professional development.