Theme of food drive continues success

The second annual Canned Madness food drive continues the March Madness theme that has helped encourage competition and runs roughly along the same timeline as the actual March Madness event.
According to leadership adviser Jamie Mooring, the school has often had difficulties with getting students to donate. Different tactics have been tried to get students excited about the food drive. However, they were often not very successful.
One year DECA did the food drive and had a ‘flocking’ competition to encourage people to donate.
“If you brought in 20 cans to DECA you could have a classroom ‘flocked’ with plastic pink flamingos,” Leadership adviser Jamie Mooring said. “They would be put in the classroom and the teacher could not get the flamingos out until that class brought in 20 cans and then they got to get rid of their flamingos. We tried all kinds of strategies and it was never effective, we could not get kids to buy in and we could not get teachers to buy in. Chris came up with the idea last year to bring the March Madness theme to PHS [and] for whatever reason that brought the buy in.”
Senior Chris Helle is the one who came up with the idea of the food drive having the theme of March Madness.
“Before I got [to PHS] you never heard anything about the food drive. I figured something like a competition, like around March Madness time, would help motivate people,” Helle said.
The leadership class organizes the entirety of the food drive.
“Prior to start we had to have an even number of teams, we had to combine classes and conferences and combine conferences to make sure it was fair because a lot of teachers would argue that one class had thirty more students,” Helle said. “It had to be as close as possible. Then, once it was time to start it was more of getting everyone excited to do it and reminding them.”
The class did several things fitting in the March Madness theme to help get students excited.
“We put the [team] logos on every door and then we talked to the teachers individually; we e-mailed the teachers… we made the big banner with the bracket down in the lunch room,” Helle said. “And prizes. The winning conference, the third floor, got doughnuts and then Profe O’Neill’s class was the winning class and they got pancakes.”
Spanish teacher Nick O’Neill said that the cause of his class’ success was student organization.
“A couple of students started a text tree as well as used social media to make announcements, encourage and remind students to bring in their donations,” O’Neill said. “Students either brought in food donations or money that would directly go to purchasing more food. In addition, students rallied together community support for donations (either parents/guardians or local businesses), either for food or money that would purchase additional food.”