D135 Students Stuff Stockings for Children Spending Christmas in Hospital
A class of 5th graders at Meadow Ridge School in Orland Park made sure that patients at Hope Children’s Hospital would have fun on the holiday during their stays.
Hailey Farrell and Jack Pavlis can relate to children their age who will spend the Christmas holiday in a hospital.
The two 5th graders in Kim Frew’s homeroom at Meadow Ridge School both have stayed in hospitals, and wanted to help those facing a stay during the holidays. When Hailey’s mother Jennifer Farrell decided for the fourth year to collect toys, games, books and other items to help make a child’s time at Hope Children’s Hospital in Oak Lawn pass a little more quickly, Hailey and Jack were ready to help.
“They can’t help that they are sick,” said Pavlis. “We can still help them have a Christmas like they usually do when they’re not sick. I felt like it’d be a great experience for everyone involved.”
With Frew’s thumbs up, Jennifer Farrell sent a letter home with her daughter’s classmates asking for about 25 items to fill stockings that would then be given to the patients. The requests included books, coloring books, crayons, markers, pencils, Play Dough, games, decks of cards and others.
“I think it’s just nice to teach the kids at this time of year to give, instead of always receiving,” Jennifer Farrell said. “What better way than to give to sick kids in the hospital who have to spend the holiday there?”
Frew’s classroom was buzzing with energy Thursday as the students eagerly filled up a couple boxes of stockings. Jack’s mother Kathy Pavlis, as well as mother Lynn Kelly, also were on hand Thursday to help with packing.
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“They’ve really been into this,” said Frew, who teaches the group throughout most of the day. “For two weeks they have been bringing in different items. We made cards with wintertime jokes. The enthusiasm from both the students and parents has been wonderful.”
Frew said the students also wanted to learn about the patients’ conditions, and how they ended up in hospital care. She described the whole effort as a moving experience.
Hailey Farrell remembers people who helped brighten her time while in hospital care, and was eager to return the favor.
“I know what it feels like,” Hailey Farrell said. “It’s really boring just sitting there. A lot of people came and tried to cheer me up, and I think the kids will appreciate this, so they have something to do.”
Later in the day on Thursday, Jennifer and Hailey Farrell dropped off the stockings at Hope Children’s Hospital.
“I think it’s great and the kids had a really good time doing it,” Jennifer Farrell said. “Hopefully, they will remember the giving, and know it’s not just about receiving.”
Here are the students in Frew's homeroom:
- Mike Bonaminio
- Jackson Briseno
- Caroline Callaghan
- Brooke Carter
- Abby Cogan
- Mike D'Antonio
- Hailey Farrell
- Jimmy Ferguson
- Sean Garozzo
- Jalen Harris
- Jennifer Horras
- Hallie Hultquist
- Hunter Kelly
- Colby Kurtzman
- Matt Luculescu
- Madison Mardoian
- Evan Olchowka
- Jack Pavlis
- Kate Payton
- Hannah Paz
- Jovanna Sarena
- Arrianna Smith
- Jasmine Thomas
- Nick Weber
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