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The Student News Site of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School

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The Student News Site of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School

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Stocking+stuffers.+Sophomores+Anna+Bezzie%2C+Santi+Rincelin+and+Angel+Rodriguez+write+heartfelt+letters+to+put+in+stockings+for+patients+at+Joe+DiMaggio%E2%80%99s+Children%E2%80%99s+Hospital.+Their+letters+were+put+in+one+of+the+112+stockings+filled+with+gifts+that+were+made+by+Latinos+in+Action+members.+%E2%80%9CLetters+to+the+children+will+be+inside+the+stockings%2C+as+well+as+toys+collected+from+the+class%2C%E2%80%9D+Hernandez+said.+
Natalia Dzielnicka
Stocking stuffers. Sophomores Anna Bezzie, Santi Rincelin and Angel Rodriguez write heartfelt letters to put in stockings for patients at Joe DiMaggio’s Children’s Hospital. Their letters were put in one of the 112 stockings filled with gifts that were made by Latinos in Action members. “Letters to the children will be inside the stockings, as well as toys collected from the class,” Hernandez said.

Latinos in Action hosted stocking activity for Joe DiMaggio hospital

For the holiday season, the Latinos in Action class organized a stocking project for the Joe DiMaggio children’s hospital on Wednesday, Nov. 29. During both periods of Latinos in Action, President Valeria Anzures and Spanish teacher Rebecca Hernandez set up supplies and assembly lines for students and other officers to create their own donated stockings.

“I love the fact that I can join a class where we become better people through helping others,” senior Ronel Chery said. “I think these stockings will make the kids at the hospital so happy since it is a gift they were not expecting.”

Latinos in Action works to empower Latino youth to be college and career ready through culture, service, leadership and education. In the past, the class, which is also a club, has held different events like writing letters for cancer patients, donations for a food drive at St. Elizabeth Church, tutoring students at Riverglades Elementary School and participation in a costume drive at Parkside Elementary School.

All the events the class hosts and participates in aims to give back to the community and those that are less fortunate.

“I joined Latinos in Action because not only did I hear it was a fun class from my friends, but they also learn about leadership skills and tutor elementary kids,” senior Ximena Alvarez. “I got really interested because I wanted to support and help my community more.”

For this project in particular, the class came together and stuffed stockings with different candies, toys and stickers for the patients at the children’s hospital. Handwritten cards wishing the children a happy holiday season were also included in the stockings.

“The stocking stuffers will have an enormous impact because I believe that any act of kindness is a big act of kindness,” senior Thierry Denis said. “The stockings filled with toys are being sent to sick children in the hospital who do not have the opportunity to celebrate Christmas, so a gesture of kindness and holiday spirit can go a very long way.”

The approximately 60 students in the two periods of Latinos in Action made 64 stockings for boys and 48 stockings for girls, which were all sent out on Wednesday, Nov. 6. 

“I originally came from Coconut Creek High School where we had a pretty decent sized program, and when I came here two years ago to MSD, it was new to the school, so I brought it with me,” Hernandez said. “It was a challenge getting the kids involved, but since then I think we have built what we call a pretty strong familia.”

For the month of December, Latinos in Action also hosted a holiday clothing drive on Friday, Dec. 8 in partnership with Boca Raton Community Church. The club accepted new, as well as gently used clothes for donations to families in less fortunate communities, particularly for families with single mothers.

Latinos in Action plans to continue more projects throughout the year to continue to aid their local community.

This story was originally published in the December 2023 Eagle Eye print edition.

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About the Contributors
Alison LaTorre, Associate Editor-in-Chief
Alison LaTorre is a senior at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. This year, she is one of the Associate Editors-in-Chief. She enjoys reading, going to the beach and listening to music.
Natalia Dzielnicka, Reporter
Natalia Dzielnicka is a freshman at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. She enjoys reading books, biking and helping out in Marjory's Garden.
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