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Libby students rally to help tsunami victims

| January 20, 2005 11:00 PM

By Heidi Desch Western News Intern

There¹s about 8,600 miles between Libby, Montana and Jakarta, Indonesia, where a large earthquake hit off the coast Dec. 26 causing a tsunami to hit a wide area of south Asia.

But that didn¹t stop Libby Middle School students from doing something to help.

Several students spent last week taking wagons around to classrooms every morning to collect spare change for donations.

Vice Principal Keith Ivers said the idea came out of wanting to get the kids involved and give them some idea of the magnitude of the situation.

The goal had been to raise $500 from the students, but they more than doubled that amount by raising $1,140.

Each day after donations were collected, a paper palm tree in the school¹s lobby was colored in to show how much money was raised that day and to mark the ongoing total.

On Monday students raised $159.65 and by Friday the donations went up to $303.18.

Ivers called the response ³encouraging and heartwarming.²

Students weren¹t the only ones giving either; staff members also contributed to raise the $1,140 over the five days.

The total amount will be donated to UNICEF to specifically help tsunami victims.

UNICEF was chosen because Ivers said they wanted to choose a charity that benefits children.