Recently, Centennial High School’s National Honor Society hosted its second annual Toys for Tots. The donations were collected during a span of twelve days, from November 18 to December 6, before and after school in the Main Lobby.
National Honor Society sponsor Marian Wyatt explained how she found out about Toys for Tots and decided to make it NHS’s annual project.
“There was a gentleman that came to see me from the United States Marine Corps, and he said that they were going to do Toys for Tots, and they had a competition for a trophy between Centennial, Central, Urbana, Mahomet, Monticello – all these surrounding schools. When I saw that there was a trophy, I’m competitive, and I was like, ‘I wanna win that!'” said Wyatt.
Last year, Centennial’s National Honor Society won the trophy. This year, Wyatt expected to have just as many toys if not more than they had last year, and she was not disappointed.
“I haven’t been told if we won, but I would be surprised if we didn’t. We have very giving students. You always hear about the negative things about students; you don’t hear about all of the good things – you know, the kids that are bringing in supplies. At the same time that we were doing [Toys for Tots], we were asking for things for Gifford, and we were asking for things for Washington. We’re still collecting things for Washington; we’ve got a big long list. You don’t have to be in National Honor Society to contribute, and some kids saw other kids bringing things and said, ‘Hey, I can bring something, too,'” noted Wyatt.
Toys for Tots means a lot to Marian Wyatt and National Honor Society.
“[The significance of Toys for Tots to me] is giving a gift to a child that wouldn’t normally have one, and I love helping kids,” stated Wyatt.
She also added, “I find that when I’m enthusiastic about something, our students are, too. If I can motivate people to help people now when they’re students, hopefully when they’re adults, in college and out of college, they won’t forget how important it is to do volunteer work. Some people don’t have time to volunteer, but they may have money that we can use to purchase a toy, and so you give where you can. I don’t have a lot of money, but I use all my time. Somebody else may have money but may not have time, and so they help me to help others.”
Dennise Arres, a member of National Honor Society and a junior at Centennial, donated toys to Toys for Tots.
“[I chose to donate toys] because of something my mom said. She said that kids who didn’t have toys would always be really happy to have any kind of toy. I thought of things I would have wanted or would have had when I was little [when I bought the toys I donated],” said Arres.
National Honor Society will host Toys for Tots again next year.