RHS students raise $11K for PCHS, HHS
Students at Russellville High School returned to school with heavy hearts the day after the deadly tornadoes ripped through Phil Campbell and tore apart the lives of people they knew, people who were strangers and people who were the same age as they were.
Student leaders felt a burden to help their neighboring schools who are just minutes down the road from them so they came up with an idea to sell T-shirts bearing a common theme among RHS, Phil Campbell High School and Hackleburg High School: their school colors and mascots.
The T-shirts created to raise money for PCHS and HHS said “Black and gold cats stick together” on the front and “Russellville supports PCHS and HHS – April 27, 2011” on the back.
The first batch of T-shirts the school purchased included 100 shirts sent to HHS and 150 shirts sent to PCHS to be distributed to their students. The student organizations at RHS footed the bill for those shirts so they could be given to tornado victims at the two schools free of charge.
In all, over 2,100 shirts from the first order and from a second order were purchased throughout the community with all of the proceeds going towards the support of those two schools. After all the numbers were tallied, RHS had enough money to send a check to HHS for $5,524.50 and a check to PCHS for $5,524.50.
RHS student council sponsor, Mandy Swinney, said she had no clue when the students first had the idea for the T-shirts that it would become such a big project, but she’s glad the idea caught on so that a sufficient amount of money could be raised for those schools in need.
“What started out as a school project turned into a community event because shirts were also ordered by residents of Phil Campbell and Hackleburg,” Swinney said.
Over a three-week period, shirts were ordered, sorted and delivered by the students and faculty of RHS.
“I think the kids were just looking for any way they could be a help to anyone who was affected,” RHS business teacher AnnaKay Holland said during the T-shirt drive. “Regardless of which school it was, the kids just wanted these other students to know how much they care about them.”
RHS Student Council members Liza Scott and Chase Holland personally presented the checks to Hackleburg principal, Johnny Hardin, and Phil Campbell High School principal, Cindy Davis.
“We were just glad to be able to do something to help,” Scott said.
“They lost so much and have a great deal of work ahead of them. We just wanted to let them know that we were thinking of them.
“I was so proud of the students of RHS and the community for participating in this project and I am glad we were able to raise so much money.”