Viking Saga

Falling Leaves Help with Senate Fees

Senior and junior senate conducted fun and safe leaf cleanup fundraiser

Sydney Lapham

A mighty wind dashed through the trees, knocking down the red, orange, and yellow leaves. The annual fall leaf cleanup was underway as the junior and senior senates and volunteers raked, bagged, and hauled in
efforts to provide for their class. “Learning the value of your work is a lesson these seniors and juniors gain, all from picking up leaves,” said co-senior class advisor Daniel Nazzaro. The fall leaf cleanup was the first senate-organized fundraiser since returning from the spring. The cleanup interacts with the residents of East Lyme and is free. Donations to the classes are welcomed though. Class president Caroline French
and junior and senior advisors met with principal Deb Kelly prior to the event to ensure safety
during the pandemic. Numbers of students were limited to two to three per yard this year, whereas
in year’s past, large teams have tackled each yard together. All volunteers were also required to wear masks and follow social distancing policies. After interested families put in a request, a date and time would
be determined for one of the four weekends of the cleanup.
“The more money we raise, the more events we can host and the cheaper it is for the class,” said the junior class vice president Kristia King. The senate has the option to fundraise in any community-friendly way possible. In the past, spike ball tournaments, raffles, and even East Lyme Day events have all contributed to the classes. Through the leaf cleanup this year, over $5000 was raised. Many other events and fundraising opportunities were canceled by COVID-19, though.
The senate was unable to fundraise this past summer, creating a gap in funds. “Lots of people are happy to see us working hard in their yards,” said senior treasurer Sujesh Kurumbail. The cleanup, up until this
year, had been a 2021 class tradition. The class created the fundraiser their freshman year and continued it annually. This year, the Class of 2021 had decided to pass down the fundraiser to the juniors. They wanted to make the fundraiser a tradition for ELHS. “Communication, teamwork, and perseverance: it’s hard work, but we’re lucky to have an involved community,” said Kurumbail. The community had engaged in
this fundraiser for the past three years. As the fundraiser became tradition to locals, the community had started counting on the fall leaf cleanup. Locals appreciate the volunteer work and love donating for a good cause.

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