FALL RIVER: Grade 6 leadership students at Ash Lee Jefferson are beaming with happiness, pride, and joy knowing their good deed is helping others less fortunate in the Fall River community.

The students are doing a variety of fundraisers over the four Fridays leading up to Christmas Break, with the only cost being a food donation towards the Lions Christmas Express. So far close to 20 boxes are full of food.

Among those days were a PJ day; Crazy Hair Day, which was Dec. 7; Twin Day; and Christmas Sweater day, set for Dec. 14.

VIDEO: ALJ talk about their fundraising

Grade 6 Leadership students Madeleine Kerr; Carley Frizzle; Ava Pembroke; and Mateja Stach spoke about what the school is doing and why they think it’s important.

“Some people need the food and we have enough so we can support them,” said Madeleine. “It’s the right thing to do.”

Carley explained what they do as Grade 6 leaders.

“We help out the little kids and around the school,” she said. “It makes our school a better place.”

“I feel like I’m responsible as a leader,” added Stach. “It’s fun.”

Madeleine had a blonde wig on for her hair on this day; while Ava’s had to be unique with balloons tied to her pig tails and flowing freely as she walked. Carley and Mateja also had their hair done up uniquely.

“It’s something easy, but we can still support this great cause,” said Ava about her hair.

Jennifer Reed, a teacher at Ash Lee and organizer of the food drive, said the project allowed the students to get involved in organizing and the community.

“It’s also such an important event that the school has been a part of forever, and they’re definitely one of the bigger contributors to the food drive,” said Reed.

She said the food drive has been a hug turnout so far this year, with more to be collected.

“The kids know where all the food is going and that is to help families in the community,” said Reed.

Reed said the students are learning good educational and life lessons from the food drive.

“I would say they’re learning about compassion; empathy; understanding that everybody is different, people need help at different times, responsibility, especially the leadership team,” she said. “Those students are learning it’s a bigger picture than just crazy hair day.”

Madeleine said seeing all the boxes filled with a couple weeks left just brings joy to her heart.

“It fills me with happiness because the whole school knows others are in need and we’re helping,” she said. “It makes me feel proud because this is my school and we do great things.”

Ava said it feels good helping others and the joy the food collected will mean to families that receive it is special.

“It means that people are going to have a meal on Christmas and we know that we did it,” said Ava.

Other schools in the area are also collecting donations for the Lions Christmas Express food drive.