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Students fill stockings for troops


Those serving the country are oftentimes stationed far away from their home, family, and friends, and this can be especially difficult for them over the holidays.

To show troops that they are being thought of and their sacrifice appreciated, the students of the Bucks County Intermediate Unit at Samuel Everitt have again undertaken a Stockings for Soldiers campaign. Now in its third year, the program has expanded from sending just a few dozen stockings in year one to a whopping 764 stockings just two years later.

Students with special needs are at the heart of making the project come together. With their teachers and support staff, an assembly line is set up and each student is assigned a task that best allows them to learn and practice skills while also participating and showing their support. From sorting donated items to making cards to actually collecting the items and stuffing them into the stockings, everyone is included and an integral part in making it the huge success it has become.

The stockings were stuffed with a variety of items such as snacks and candy, personal hygiene products, holiday cards, stationary items, and books. In addition to the 764 stockings, a total of 16 boxes of even more goodies and supplies were also packaged up for shipping out to the troops.

The majority of the boxes are being sent to the 13th MEU (Marine Expeditionary Unit), a group of Marines who are currently deployed in classified locations working with ongoing operations. Boxes are also sent to Marines with the 3rd Battalion, currently deployed in Japan, and airmen with the 380 EAMXS (Expeditionary Aircraft Maintenance Squadron), currently deployed in the United Arab Emirates.

This program’s success is largely due to the support and donations received from a wide variety of businesses and organizations, including several Giant stores (Fairless Hills, Langhorne, Morrisville, Southampton, and Yardley), Redner’s (Levittown) and Sam’s Club (Langhorne).

The Bucks County Intermediate Unit Education Foundation provided a $600 grant for the purchase of the stockings, and Fore the Troops, a nonprofit charitable organization that raises money to support philanthropic organization focused on programs and support of military personnel and their families, delivered a $2,500 grant to cover the cost of shipping. Let’s Bake Cookie Company (Bensalem), Kiddie Academy (Feasterville) and the Bucks County Intermediate Unit (Doylestown) served as dropoff points for public donations and the students from the IU HOPE program (New Hope-Solebury School District) and Samuel Everitt collected all the items.