Students Warm Up the Community


Maria Adams

On Nov. 19, 2019, box begins to overflow items. Students showed their passion for giving back to the community.

Maria Adams, Business Manager

With winter storming in and temperatures falling, everyone needs to bundle up. Yansa Grainger, mother of two Ola alumni, started Helping Henry County Stay Warm & Toasty nine years ago. They provide warm clothing to non-profit charities in the community.

“There are over 1100 kids in Henry County alone that are considered ”homeless”. There are so many in shelters, some live in motels, or many live in their cars with an adult. We strive to stock up church closets, shelters and all organizations with the mission to help the homeless,” Grainger said.

Helping Henry County Stay Warm & Toasty asks citizens to give new blankets, underwear, socks, scarves, hats and gloves. These items will go to crisis shelters, church closets, hospice patients, and nursing home residents, the homeless, and lower-income families.

The program donated the items to A Friend’s House, but as the donations exceeded the need, they began to give the items to Haven House, Operation Lunchbox, church shelters, food pantries. Last year, Henry County citizens donated 13,000 items. The goal this year is anything over last year’s, but it can only be accomplished with the help of the community.

“We challenge churches and schools to do their own Warm & Toasty drives,” Grainger said.

This year, Ola High and Middle School are competing Locust Grove High and Middle School to see who will donate more. The Warm & Toasty War began at the beginning of November and will end on the last day of the month, Nov. 21, 2019. Individuals can donate, but many clubs have their members donate for volunteer hours.

We are not just “smart” kids, we are also kids that like to make a difference””

— Linda Bates

“We are not just “smart” kids, we are also kids that like to make a difference,” Linda Bates, National Honors Society sponsor, said.

The National Honors Society donated roughly 80 to 100 items to Warm & Toasty last year. Other school organizations plan on doing the same, including the Spanish National Honors Society and Beta Club.

In order to help Ola win and benefit a good cause, please be sure to donate before Nov. 21, 2019 in the Media Center. If you forget, you can donate to drop-off centers located all around Henry County until Nov. 30, 2019.