A van of cans goes a long way
The News. Michaele Duke. December 05, 2017.

Kingstree Middle Magnet School for the Arts BETA Club chose to help those in need as one of their service projects. Sponsor and Guidance Counselor Pamela Prince said the club, along with the students of the Magnet school, wanted to give back to the community.

“The Ark is always giving to the community so they wanted to do something positive to give back to the community,” said Prince. The students collected over 800 canned and dry goods.

The mission of the BETA Club is to promote the ideals of academic achievement, character, service, and leadership among elementary and secondary school students.

Selena McKnight is a first year BETA member who participated in the can drive. “It’s was fun because it’s giving back to the community,” said the sixth grader. “Some people really need it.” Fellow student and BETA Club member Kristan McKnight agreed. “This is my first year and we’re already doing something big and something good,” said McKnight.

Tina Harrison Andrews, Coordinator for The Ark was overwhelmed with the students’ generosity. “This is so awesome. Words can’t even describe this,” said Andrews who was moved to tears. “My heart is overjoyed. They have touched so many families.” Andrews said the care packages would get them through the holidays and beyond. She said once they make up the boxes that will include the children’s donations, they could feed over 400 families.

The Ark, located at 161 N. Academy Street in Kingstree, has been feeding families since 2008. The non-profit 501(c)3 organization serves Williamsburg and surrounding counties. They provide food boxes to 300 families every third Saturday of the month, not including emergency cases. They also assist with utilities and rent. “We have people that contact us who have been burned out or put out or they just don’t have enough to make ends meet and we’re there for them,” said Andrews.

The Kingstree Middle Magnet School for the Arts BETA Club students pose with Principal James Carraway, sponsors Guidance Counselor Pamela Prince and Kristan McKnight and Tina Harrison Andrews, Coordinator for The Ark. The kids collected canned goods for the non-profit that will be distributed to needy families.

Principal James Carraway applauded the students for their generosity. “Projects like these go above and beyond to help them become good citizens,” said Carraway. “When you do projects like this it allows to you not be selfish but selfless. You not only think about yourself because in order for them to be so successful, of course they have to put in the work to excel as great as they do, but to take time out to say “You know what, let it not be just about me, what can I do to help others.” He added that he is proud of the students who are doing other projects. “As a school leader, yes I have a vision, but this is their school as well.”

Sixth grade English teacher Alisha Corsell also sponsors the BETA Club. Their next project is making care packages for the Willowglen students that attend the Magnet school. “The BETA Club will do 40 care packages,” said Prince. “They’ll fill them with chips, whatever they want to put in their goodie bags.”

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