Another bell students want to ring |

Another bell students want to ring

Connie Steiert
Kathy Heicher/Enterprise Among the students who have volunteered for the Salvation Army is Lana Hymes, a junior at Eagle Valley High School who lives in Eagle.

EAGLE COUNTY – It’s a perfect match. The Vail Valley Salvation Army is in desperate need of bell ringers this holiday season. And some local students are searching for altruistic ways to make a difference in the world.You many have seen them ringing the trademark bells over the red kettles in Eagle, Gypsum and Avon. Some 40 Eagle Valley High School students volunteered their time to help the needy this season.

“I just got involved because it makes me feel good to know that, by doing this, I’m helping people in need and also, I know I am giving back to the community,” says Zach Ramsey, an Eagle Valley High School freshman.Health teacher Susan Scott, who spearheaded the event with three of her students, didn’t have to ask her students twice to volunteer.”I’m pretty excited,” said junior Mackenzie Degroat. She and her boyfriend are both involved in the Leo Club and are no strangers to community service, she said. The “Eagle Valley High School Day” is part of a new community service Scott has started with the help of seniors Amy and Morgan Strakbein and sophomore Kerstin Leary. She and her students drew up a list of projects, such as helping in science class, assisting students who are learning fill out enrollment forms and, of course, bell-ringing.

“Basically, I went around to all the classrooms and talked to my peers and said this is a great opportunity – and it will be fun,” said Leary, who has been on the Eagle River Watershed Council, volunteered at the Eagle Valley Humane Society and been a mentor for middle schools students.Part of the plan is to recognize students for their community service at school assemblies and at the year-end awards night.”So many times, we recognize athletes at assemblies,” notes Scott. “Now, we are going to recognize community service.” Many of the bell ringers also filled Salvation Army baskets at the Methodist church in Eagle on Saturday.

“I think it’s great for our community,” says Leary. “We are showing that we care about other things than just the normal things teenagers care about, and giving back to others.”Vail, Colorado

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