Providing Resources to the Homeless

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Recognizing that those less fortunate are not only in need of assistance during the holiday season but all year long, the National Honor Society at Bayport-Blue Point High School recently concluded a personal care product drive for the homeless in Suffolk County. The students have been hosting such a collection for the past three years, the past two of which provided hygiene care packs to more than 550 homeless adults and children.

“Homelessness is a problem that is not limited to communities far away from ours,” NHS adviser Donna Edgar stated. “It affects individuals as close as our own neighborhoods – something that is often shocking for our students to learn.” Reflecting on how Superstorm Sandy put even greater pressure on the already limited resources available to those in need, Ms. Edgar noted that this year’s collection drive was of great importance.

Teaming up with the Suffolk County Department of Social Services, the students inspired their peers to donate personal hygiene products – toothbrushes, toothpaste, body wash, shampoo and washcloths – during their homeroom periods. Thanks to the support of the school’s students and staff, this year the NHS members were able collect more than 1,000 items and create more than 200 care packages for the county’s homeless.

“Currently there are 225 homeless individuals in the county. The students’ efforts will provide enough resources to assist almost our entire homeless individual population,” stated Department of Social Services representative Cate Clifford. “We often think about giving to others during the holiday season, but as these individuals’ personal struggles continue all year long, it is important to continue to remember to help them during the other times of the year.”