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East Hardin Middle School raises money for tornado-damaged areas

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Funds helped local families and strangers

By Kelly Cantrall

One local middle school has raised thousands of dollars to help their neighbors and people they have never met.

Students and faculty at East Hardin Middle School raised more than $5,600 for tornado relief in Hardin County and for a middle school in eastern Kentucky.

Several East Hardin students and their families incurred damage to their homes from a Feb. 29 tornado, prompting faculty members and administrators to contemplate ways to help. After damage elsewhere in the state and Indiana caused by tornadoes, March 2, they wanted to help others outside of Hardin County as well.

Herald Whitaker Middle School in Magoffin County was severely damage and students haven’t returned to the building since the storms. East Hardin faculty and administrators decided to help them as well, and contacted the Youth Services Center at Herald Whitaker to determine what the school needed.

East Hardin Principal Daniel Lockwood said they decided to raise money when they learned local families needed that most, for expenses such as rental deposits. He talked to students about the importance of helping those who live near them.

“This is what you do, you support each other in the community,” he said.

School officials set a goal of $3,000, or $1,000 for each grade level.

Students were invested in the project, Lockwood said, and soon the total far surpassed the original goal.

“It was just fantastic. I couldn’t praise the kids enough,” he said.

The school gave a large portion of the money to local families and used the rest to order school supplies for Herald Whitaker Middle School.

Eighth-grader Rebekah Mobley is proud of her school and thought the idea to raise money for damaged areas was a great one.

“It just shows how active we are in our community,” Mobley said.

She said it was good to help other people in other places as well.

“We just want to do what we can to help other people,” she said.

Kelly Cantrall can be reached at (270) 505-1747 or kcantrall@thenewsenterprise.com.