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“You must each decide in your heart how much to give. And don’t give reluctantly or in response to pressure. For God loves a person who gives cheerfully.” — 2 Corinthians 9:7
The generosity of a group of Williamstown children is being felt a world away.
Wonder Worship, a children’s program at Williamstown Christian Church, decided to take action after hearing about the humanitarian efforts of Sgt. William “Cody” McClelland and his fellow soldiers in Afghanistan.
During his recent two-week visit home, McClelland spoke to the group, consisting of 30 kids ages 3-11, about delivering school supplies to Afghan children.
“He explained that to them owning something as simple as a pencil, is akin to owning a piece of gold,” said Kelsee Link, one of the leaders of Wonder Worship. “He also shared a series of photos so that the Wonder Worship kids could visually understand the situation and environment in which the Afghan children are living.”
The presentation resonated with Wonder Worship, and they were inspired to help children on the other side of the world.
They collected enough school supplies to fill 10 flat-rate boxes, which included thank you notes and drawings for McClelland from each of the Wonder Worship children.
“These children are so happy to get school supplies, shoes and other things,” McClelland said. “A lot of kids don’t realize all the privileges we have in the U.S. like the ability to go to school. But in Afghanistan and other places in the world, there are not the opportunities like the ones we take for granted in the U.S.”
In all, the group sent 2,411 pencils, 696 crayons, 261 erasers, 160 chalk sticks, 118 spiral-bound notebooks, 60 color pencils, 34 pocket folders, 17 markers, 10 pens, nine packs of paper, three pencil holders, two paint sets, two pencil sharpeners and two pairs of scissors.
Link also enlisted the help of a close friend to gather supplies for the cause.
Heather Congo, an English professor at Wallace State Community College in Alabama, offered extra credit to her students if they donated supplies toward the effort.
Helping others is not new to the Wonder Worship children.
They have donated newborn supplies and necessities to benefit CareNet, as well as sponsored an 8-year-old girl named Cherlene from the Philippines, through World Vision.
“Their ongoing willingness to show kindness and generosity to others, is a true testament to the humanity and love that exists in the hearts of people in this community, and around the world,” said Link.