Friday, November 9, 2018

Fort Thomas Independent Schools Receive Highest Community Partner Award by Brighton Center


Fort Thomas Independent Schools were awarded Brighton Center’s Liz Herald Community Support Award at their annual dinner last month. The award was created in honor of the lifetime contributions of Liz Herald to recognize individuals, businesses and organizations for their efforts in collaborating with Brighton Center for the good of the agency and community.

CEO of Brighton Center, Tammy Weidinger said this award is the highest honor they give a community partner.

For 40 years, Liz was an active volunteer for Brighton Center, providing over 1,500 hours a year in support of their mission of creating opportunities for individuals and families to reach self-sufficiency.

“Highlands High School has hosted a canned food drive for Brighton Center’s food pantry since the early 70’s. And at some point, the Middle School joined in the effort as well,” said Weidinger. “Teachers have supported and mentored students and students have shown initiative and drive to collect thousands of cans of food each year.  We also have groups of students come to the food pantry and help sort and stock food for our customers.

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The food they collected has provided a meal for thousands of families in need.  Parents are relieved to be able to feed their family and children are going to bed with a full stomach.  Honestly, we’ve come to rely on that huge mountain of food to get us through the holidays and winter months.”

Weidinger said that collecting, preparing, distributing or serving food is the number one volunteer activity in our nation.

“We seem to all agree no one should be hungry in our country and its important that our youth are engaged in their communities,” she said.

Elise Carter, Business Teacher, FBLA and Student Council sponsor, attended an awards ceremony with the Highlands students. She agreed with Weidinger that it’s important to get students involved in their community while they are in school.

“For me and what I hope that students find important is that the little things matter. A canned food item here or donating a dollar there can make a huge impact to the community that surrounds them. Food insecurity is a huge problem in our nation and their efforts do not go unrecognized and make a huge impact in removing hunger from our vocabulary,” said Carter.

In addition to the teachers and students who were representing Highlands at the awards dinner, Highlands alumni Don Cowan, Class of 1976, spoke about how students were engaged and had some fun with the food drive early on.

Carter said that she thought Cowan’s comments about how caring Highlands students have always been were poignant.


“He said that we wear the term “cake-eater” like a badge of honor but Highlands students are the most caring and thoughtful individuals he’s ever known both when he was in school and now,” she said.

Cowan said that he was very proud that the canned food drive has carried on and has helped so many people for so many years.

Caption: Brighton Center CEO, Tammy Weidinger, with Highlands students and teachers at the annual Brighton Center dinner last month. 


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