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Students ready for charity week

January 29, 2014 - Clarkston High School students will show off their talent, dodgeball skills and warm hearts as the fifth annual Charity Week begins on Monday.

"They look forward to all of the events," said Elise Cameron, from the Leadership class. "They really like supporting all the charities especially since they are more local. They get excited to help them out, too."

Donations from this year's events are split between five charities - Distaster Relief at Work (DRAW), Friends of Ryan Kennedy (FORK), Wigs 4 Kids, Gilda's Club and the Jimmy V. Foundation.

"We kept DRAW and Jimmy V because they are always charities we help," said Emily Moreno. "We love Greg Martin and the work he is doing with DRAW."

Adding FORK to one of the charities was only natural. Kennedy attended North Sashabaw Elementary until he passed away from cancer in 2012. The students raise money in his memory through their annual spring 5K run.

"We wanted to help them more," Moreno added

Gilda's Club, located in Detroit and Grand Rapids, provides a cancer support community for those with cancer, their families and friends for free.

Rachel Darin explained the Leadership 1 class chose Gilda's Club for their charity.

"We are supporting them," Darin added.

Wigs 4 Kids is a non-profit organization reaching out to kids and young adults with hair loss.

"We thought they would be a nice charity to work with," said Moreno. "We had a competition in November which the proceeds went to Wigs 4 Kids to give people an introduction to them."

The week kicks off with an assembly on Monday for the high school students with Martin, the director of DRAW, as their keynote speaker.

The community is invited to the "C" Factor Talent Show at Clarkston Junior High School, 6 p.m. on Feb. 4.

Students from both the high school and the junior high show off their talent during the event.

Darin explained each act has a jar and people can place money in the jar to vote for the act they like.

"The act with the most money in their jar will become our winner," she added.

The admission is $1 and there is a silent auction.

The annual dodgeball tournament is Feb. 6 in the high school's gym, 7 p.m. The admission is $1.

"This year instead of doing a volleyball tournament we decided to do dodgeball," said Megan Vondette. "It makes it a little more fun."

She added they already have a lot of teams signed up and ready to take aim at their classmates and high school staff.

"It is really encouraging especially for the people participating in the events to see the support from the community," Moreno added.

The students will also raise money during their fifth hour classes throughout the week long Penny War. Pennies represent positive points while silver coins and dollars are negative points.

The students can buy popcorn, cotton candy and sno-cones for $1 each on Feb. 7 during the Charity Week Lunch Carnival.

The Charity Week ends on Feb. 8 with the Sadie Hawkins dance, 7 p.m.

Leadership students have already received sponsorships from local businesses and companies for their annual event.

"This year we have 18 sponsors," Darin said. "It is very helpful."

Wendi graduated from the University of Michigan-Flint with a degree in communications. She wrote for the Michigan Times college paper and Grand Blanc View before joining The Clarkston News in October 2007. Follow Clarkston sports on Twitter @CNewsWRSports.
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