JAY — When the LEAP building in Farmington exploded, it created a chain reaction that was felt all over Franklin County.

The area around where the explosion happened became devastated, and many people lost their homes. The 8th grade students in the classes of Denise Acritelli and Jayne Flagg wanted to help. We started to brainstorm what we could do to make a difference in these people’s lives.

We came up with the idea of having a Hat Day to raise money. Kids volunteered to help and come early in the morning to collect money. We even decided that doing a bake sale would also be beneficial.

Before we could do any of these activities, however, we needed to get permission from our principal, Greg Henderson. Dylan Jackson wrote a letter to Mr. Henderson asking permission to help these people by taking it upon ourselves to hold such activities. He accepted and we were all set to go.

Brooke Schoonover made beautiful flyers for Hat Day. These were hung up at our school and when the day came, Julia Mercier, Brenden Veilleux, Mary Hamblin, Peyton Reichenbach, Brooklyn Fournier, and Dylan Jackson stood at the entrances to the school with stickers, charging $1.00 to be allowed to wear a hat in school.

That day, after 1st period classes started, we learned that we had raised $119! Proud of our accomplishments, we continued with the next part of our plan.

Next would be our bake sale to be held during Open House. Arianna Donahue, Brianna and Abigail Burhoe made posters for the bake sale. Tyler Guay, Dylan Jackson, Brenden Veilleux, Alexis Cote, Faith Maurais, Julia Mercier, Brooke Schoonover, Arianna Donahue, Hunter Bibeau and Jayne Flagg brought in baked goods, such as various cookies, brownies, cupcakes, gluten free choices, and delicious pumpkin squares.

The baked goods were priced at $0.50 but donations were accepted for any item. We raised a total of $139! Combined we raised $258! A check will be made out to the families who lost homes, through The United Way of Tri-Valley Area in Farmington.

Thanks to the kids and adults who volunteered and the generosity of the buyers at the bake sale with their donations, we were able to help the people whose homes were destroyed by the LEAP building explosion, and become more a part of our community.

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