There’s no time like Valentine’s Day to show how much you care about the people around you, even if they’re people you barely know.
The students of Moffat County High School got into the spirit of kindness and philanthropy the past few days with Have a Heart Week. Sponsored by the MCHS Key Club, the weeklong event was a chance for teens to learn the benefits of thinking of others.
A presentation Monday by Bear River Young Life Director David Pressgrove detailed the negative side of “tunnel vision,” a lack of awareness to the needs of peers that can affect people of any age.
Opening one’s self up to the people around them and keeping a considerate attitude ultimately helps that person develop themselves and their community better, he said.
“One of the best ways to come out of tunnel vision is becoming aware that your actions and words affect others,” Pressgrove said. “That’s what adolescence is, transitioning out being taken care of your whole life to having to take care of yourself. Some kids do it in a healthy way in high school and some, they’re 38 and realize, ‘Oh, I’m still not mature enough to be an adult.’”
Activities this week took many forms, such as a lunchtime bake sale by the group on Tuesday that raised about $160, which they will donate to March of Dimes. Wednesday was a day for recruiting new members to Key Club, while Thursday saw representatives of numerous nonprofit and service organizations visit the school to demonstrate what they offer the area.
Students met with people from Freedom Hooves, Rotary Club, Kiwanis Club, Northwest Colorado Visiting Nurse Association and many more.
Key Club adviser Lauren Kartus said about half the student body showed up to learn about what options are open to those who want to help make a difference.
“They seemed really interested in volunteering,” she said.
This week also saw MCHS Student Council providing elementary school children with the chance to decorate their own Valentine’s Day cookies.
Some sweet surprises are in store for MCHS as well, as Key Club plans some additional activities for the holiday. Also, the group’s food drive to benefit the Interfaith Food Bank will be seeking donations during Friday evening’s basketball games against visiting Cedaredge.
Community members are welcome to pitch in for the effort.
Pressgrove pointed to the members of Key Club and other students who are already doing a lot for their age group and people within the area.
“They’re great because they really care about the community and others,” he said.
Contact Andy Bockelman at 970-875-1793 or abockelman@CraigDailyPress.com.