Students, Employees Made Holidays Happier for Hundreds of Local Children

(1-5-99) -- Boston College students and employees helped brighten the holiday season for local children through their generous contributions to University-coordinated Christmas drives.

Employees and students donated clothing and toys to some 450 youngsters in the care of the Italian Home and Department of Social Services. Buildings and Grounds Assistant Director Paula Forget, who has coordinated the drive for more than a decade, said this year's effort was particularly successful.

"We couldn't believe what we got," said Forget. "All the children at least got clothes and most of them received both clothes and toys."

"These were wonderful presents, and they were of very good quality, too," said Joanne Moran, a social worker at the DSS Brighton office, which distributed gifts to about 300 children ranging from infants to teenagers. "It was a really nice gesture on BC's part, and greatly appreciated."

The Boston College Police Department's sixth annual toy drive also enjoyed another fruitful year, raising over $700 for the Massachusetts Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Children. The organization sent a list of children, their ages and toy requests, which the BCPD posted in its office lobby where it was available for employees and students.

"It wound up starting a little later than usual this year," said Patrol Officer John Ellis, the drive's coordinator, "but we got a very good response from the University community."

The Boston College Staff Advisory Senate delivered 250 gifts of hats and mittens -- donated by staff members -- to children at the Dana Farber Cancer Institute, The Burns Shriners Hospital, Boston Children's Hospital and the Boston College Campus School, according to Maria Koufos, manager of student learning/support in Information Technology.

Koufos said she has continued to receive gifts since Christmas and is planning to make another delivery soon. "I received a letter from Dana Farber asking us to send a huge thank-you to the Staff Advisory Senate and the Boston College staff," said Koufos.

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