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CSF sponsors Star Tree kids

This year as in the past, the California Scholarship Federation gave students on campus a chance to share gifts with underprivileged children around the city. On Dec. 3 the Star Tree Program visited campus and over 50 students took home a star with a child’s name, age, description of clothing size and toy preference to assist students in the gift-buying process.

“Star Tree is more convenient for us because all we have to do is collect and wrap the gifts, then Salvation Army does the rest,” Molly Sargent, CSF advisor, said. “This year we were able to sell all 50 stars and give these children a happier holiday season.”

Most of the sponsored children come from poor families with one or both parents outside the home, incarcerated, or dead. Star Tree children are selected by Salvation Army officers according to the child’s age and living conditions. For over fifty years they have provided gifts to needy children for the holidays. Many students on campus made a decision this year to improve the holiday of a child.

“One of CSF’s goals is to reach out to the community and be a witness to those around us,” Laura Berg, ?04, said. “By participating in CSF’s Star Tree program, we can help unfortunate children in the Fresno/Clovis area have a merrier Christmas. I hope that the students who participated will see the importance and the joy that serving brings to our community.”

Sponsoring children not only gives them an opportunity to enjoy the holidays, but it also teaches the students the value of humility.

“It’s worthwhile program for students because most of them live in comfortable homes and usually get what they ask for Christmas,” Sargent said. “This program hopefully will open the students eyes to how a good portion of people in the Fresno area live and increases their Christian compassion.”

Some students view Star Tree as a quality chance to receive community service (CS) for the semester, while helping children at the same time.

“I enjoy helping out the kids and the CS credit, is just an appreciated plus” Kacie Filgas, ’05, said. “I think it’s a great idea to give CS credit because it causes more students to get involved.”

For more information about the Star Tree program, students can contact the Salvation Army at www.salvationarmy.org or in Fresno call 435-5783. After the holiday, students or other interested persons can also organize a Star Tree by contacting local Salvation Army Thrift Stores. The Peoples Church is also handing out Stars until Dec. 12 in their main office.

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