Bates students, staff raise funds for needy families

Rain, wind and icy cold weather won’t deter Bates Technical College staff and students from collecting donations for the 20th annual Food and Toy Drive to benefit Bates students in need during the holidays.

On Dec. 1 and 2, between 6:30 a.m. and 10 a.m., staff and student volunteers will canvas Yakima Avenue from 11th to Earnest S. Brazill streets seeking cash, non-perishable food items and toy donations. Throughout the fundraiser, Bates’ Fire Service students will carry on the annual tradition of performing push-ups for cash donations.

“Year after year, the money raised during this unique fundraiser has steadily increased, which allows us to reach out and help more students who need it,” said Patrick Brown, the college’s registrar and chair of this event. “We know times are tough — especially during the holiday season, so we are grateful for the generosity of students, staff and the community,” he said.

Last year, the drive raised more than $9,000, which organizers used to purchase food and gifts for nearly 175 Bates students and their families.