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Most Central Hardin High School FFA students never have met Sydney Dover, but many are devoting their Saturday to help the little girl and her family.
The FFA is hosting a fall festival from 2 to 8 p.m. Saturday in the Central parking lot to raise money for the 8-year-old Lakewood Elementary School student who was diagnosed with cancer in August after previously battling it at age 2.
FFA member Jordan Elmore set the idea in motion. Her mother knows some members of the Dover family and she recently learned of Dover’s diagnosis of osteosarcoma of the jawbone.
“My mom came home really upset about it one day,” Elmore said.
Elmore said she felt very lucky to have a happy and healthy family and she wanted to help this family as it faced a difficult time.
“I felt really, really bad,” she said.
She approached FFA co-adviser Meagan Bishop about the idea, and together they discussed turning what originally was intended to be a fun day for FFA members on Saturday into a fundraising festival.
The festival will offer a variety of activities including a trunk-or-treat, face-painting, a cake walk and a hay maze. Families can buy tickets for the activities for 50 cents each and there will be $5 all-day passes for the bounce houses. Tickets also can buy food and drink.
Bishop said FFA is a community-based service organization and this was a way to follow the FFA motto, which includes the line “living to serve.”
“We don’t know her, we don’t have to know her to know that family’s in need,” she said.
Most of the booths will be operated by FFA students and many of the items needed were supplied by them, she said.
Bishop said she and other advisers decided to continue this every year, choosing different places to direct the funds, because of how excited the students became about helping the Dover family.
“The whole time we were talking about this, you could hear a pin drop,” she said.
The Dovers are unable to attend the event, but Bishop said they were thankful and excited to learn of the festival.
Kelly Cantrall can be reached at (270) 505-1747 or email@example.com.