St. Joe students collect goods for Hope Lodge
MADISON — St. Joseph Catholic School has collected hundreds of items to donate to the American Cancer Society’s Hope Lodge, including non-perishable food, paper towels, bottled water, and more.
The Hope Lodge is located in Jackson and is a place for cancer patients to stay free of charge when they receive medical treatment. Representatives from the lodge will accept the collected items this Friday during halftime of the St. Joe vs. Presbyterian Christian School football game.
St. Joe and Presbyterian Christian School from Hattiesburg will formally present thousands of dollars in food, supplies, and cash to the Hope Lodge and American Cancer Society.
St. Joe faculty cheer advisor and math teacher Samantha Poole said this is a great time to draw attention to cancer as a whole due to October being Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
“This will go miles in helping families with cancer patients who travel out of town to Jackson to receive necessary medical treatment,” Poole said. “Sometimes these families stay for days or even weeks. These donations will help ease their financial burden.”
The Hope Lodge, located at 2615 N. State Street in Jackson, offers 32 guest rooms near cancer treatment centers. Along with providing guest rooms, it also offers a fully-equipped community kitchen, free laundry rooms with supplies, televisions, and computer access.
St. Joe joined forces with Presbyterian Christian School to help stock the Hope Lodge with necessary items, and as of Tuesday, St. Joe has collected more than 2,800 items with more supplies arriving daily.
The school is also selling t-shirts in support of the Hope Lodge with 100 percent of the proceeds going directly to the American Cancer Society and has raised more than $3,000 in just t-shirts alone.
Helping the Hope Lodge was just one of several community outreach efforts organized by St. Joe this year, with others including food collection for local food banks, feeding families at Thanksgiving and Christmas, and hosting an Angel Tree for children at Christmas.
On top of those events, the school’s largest annual community fundraiser, BruinTHON, happens each spring and raises money for Children’s of Mississippi, formerly known as Blair E. Batson Children’s Hospital. This past April, St. Joe raised a record $19,665.
St. Joe Principal Dr. Dena Kinsey said the school’s effort to help the Hope Lodge is what St. Joe is all about.
“We’re all about educating our students and preparing them for life following Christ by helping others in need,” Kinsey said. “I am always so proud of our St. Joe community for stepping up and helping cancer patients and their families, giving them one less thing to worry about. It’s the St. Joe way.”