Area students mark National Key Club week

Published 11:54 pm Friday, November 11, 2016

High school students around the country and in Vicksburg recognized this past week as National Key Club Week.

At St. Aloysius High School, Key Club advisor Christin Matthews and club president Annabeth Breeden chose to mark the week by collecting donations in collaboration with the Junior Auxiliary of Vicksburg for JAV Cares. JAV Cares is one of the auxiliary’s service projects, which supports Good Shepherd Community Center — a United Methodist ministry that provides childcare, a GED program, a medical clinic, a tutoring program and more.

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“We wanted to do it in house and open it up for the whole school to participate,” Matthews said.

Breeden inviting all students at St. Al to collect household items and school supplies for the center. The grade with the most donations will receive a pizza party hosted by the Key Club. 

“That was Annabeth, our president, that was her idea. She came up with that, and I wanted to implement that,” Matthews said.

She said the Key Club will continue to donate time and items to Good Shepherd throughout the year, and this school wide, weeklong project was meant to jumpstart the partnership between JA and Key Club.

Matthews is on the JAV Cares committee and helped bridge the connection between the Junior Auxiliary and the St. Al Key Club.

“I knew the organization needed help and St. Al has helped Good Shepherd in the past. They go and visit the children and play with them a lot. So this really worked out,” Matthews said.

The school’s senior service theology students try to visit the center weekly and take any donations students have gathered with them, she said.

“They help Key Club by taking those items and dropping them off when they go,” Matthews said.

She said the Key Club, which consists of 10th through 12th grade students, has been growing over the past few years.

As the club starts taking on more projects she hopes to gain even more members.

“In 2013, we had approximately 40 members,” Matthews said. “This year we have 72 members. Our goal is to become more active in the community. What helps is having club officers with initiative and experience in serving the community.

Other St. Al Key Club officers are vice president Alexandra Tzotzolas, secretary Holly Hayes, treasurer Adrienne Eckstein, club editor Grace Upshaw, and class directors Dylan McBride, Anne Stewart Piazza and Madalyn Burke.

The club plans to help with Jacob’s Ladder Learning Center’s First Annual Turkey Trot 5K Run/Walk and Vicksburg Convention Center’s 15th Annual Breakfast with Santa event.