School breaks 'Pennies for Patients' campaign record

Several Knox County Schools are raising thousands of dollars for cancer research , penny by penny. (4/7/17)

Several Knox County Schools are participating in the "Pennies for Patients" fundraiser for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.

Students at Northwest Middle School learned Friday they not surpassed their original goal of $4,500 but set a school record, raising $6,466.14.

At Northwest Middle School, pennies come not from heaven but from homerooms, which competed to raise the most cash. Ms. Warner's homeroom won, raising $1,258.07. This was her second year raising more than $1,000.

That information came from Michelle Staal, who runs a program for both Northwest and the entire district called AVID, which prepares students for high school, college and beyond.

Pennies of Patients, she said, is "completely student-driven, which, hopefully, will give them skills to be better prepared for college, as well as just a job environment."

On Friday morning, eighth graders in the AVID program were busy counting the donations that came in on the campaign's final day.

"Every penny counts," AVID eighth graders Doada Sieh and Nevaeh Lawson told WBIR 10News.

"Helping the community do this is very important to me, and, obviously, I like to give back because I feel so fortunate and everything," Lawson said.

"It makes me very happy to know that I'm helping other people because that's one of my main goals, is just to help other people or to serve," Sieh said.

The grand total of nearly $6,500 will go to help fight life-threatening diseases.

"You know, they make connections to family members and how cancer affects just about anybody," Staal said.

That's a valuable lesson that can't be counted in coins.

In its seven years of participating in Pennies for Patients, Northwest Middle School has raised more than $30,000 for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.

© 2017 WBIR.COM


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