According to Feeding America, a hunger relief organization “34 percent of low income families have issues with purchasing basic household goods. This includes items such as toothpaste, deodorant, laundry detergent, and so on.”
This is one of the main ideas that drives the National Honors Society at Hiawatha High School to build what they are calling “success stations.”
The student organization is trying to help improve students’ academic performance, and one thing that helps improve academics is attendance. If you’re a student who has no deodorant at home, if you don’t have the basic supplies to wash your hair with, or a working washing machine, this can all lead to undue stress for students attending school.
For this reason two cabinets will be built and installed at HHS, one for the girls’ restroom and one for the boys’ restroom. These cabinets will be lockable, but during regular school hours they will be unlocked and stocked with the necessary supplies every student should have access to. These supplies include deodorant, socks, shampoo/conditioner, laundry detergent, sanitary supplies and so on.
In addition to these cabinets, the NHS also plans to have two lock boxes to accompany each cabinet. These will be called “anonymous tools,” where if you’re a student who needs a package of socks, you can slip a piece of paper with that and your locker number on it, and the product will be delivered to you. NHS sponsor Jenny Dunn will be the only one to know which locker the items should be delivered to, but the NHS will provide the items.
The organization is fundraising in order to build these Success Stations.
“The items for the stations, however, will be donated by the student body, and maybe the community,” says Dunn. These stations will begin this year and be an ongoing project for NHS members each year.
“The items that students need, rather than what they want, will be what the stations will be stocked with,” Dunn explains.
NHS is taking donations to build these stations, and they linked up with the HHS Student Council on Dec. 20 for home basketball games against Nemaha Central, and if community members brought an item that could be put into the stations they will earn a ticket for a chance to win a “winter basket” filled with things to do on a cold day.