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Lower, Upper Schools Running Giving Tree, Toy Drive efforts for Those in Need

Fresh off a successful Thanksgiving Food Drive that saw more than 750 boxes and cans of non-perishables, as well as more than 1,400 pounds of turkey, 250 pounds of onions and 200 pounds of potatoes be delivered to food pantries at St. Mark the Evangelist and St. Charles Borromeo in Harlem, the Iona Prep community is back in the giving spirit. This month, the annual Giving Tree initiative at the Lower School and Student-Faculty Council Toy Drive at the Upper School are in full effect.

At the Lower School, gift tags chosen by the students were sent home with a letter and parents are asked to help make a Christmas wish come true by doing the following:
  • Please purchase the gift indicated on the tag.
  • Please fasten the gift tag to the outside of your gift.
  • Please DO NOT wrap the gift.
  • Gift cards may be returned in an envelope labelled “Giving Tree.”
Gifts will be collected at school through Friday, Dec. 8, when they will be blessed during the school-wide Immaculate Conception Mass. Those who choose not to participate are asked to return the gift tag to their son’s homeroom teacher as soon as possible. Monetary donations are also welcome, and the Lower School will purchase gifts on parents' behalf.

This year's gifts and donations will support several local charities, including the Little Sisters of the Poor, Hope Community Services, Friends of Karen, My Sister’s Place and the Christian Brothers’ retirement residence. These organizations play an important role in our community, helping those in need, and they greatly appreciate Iona Preparatory School's support.

Under the guidance of Brother Lucian, our 8th-grade students are helping to organize the “Giving Tree” project and deliver the gifts in early December. Through the “Giving Tree” tradition, Iona Prep follows the Christian Brothers’ commitment to serve others and thus honor the life of the Blessed Edmund Rice.

For more than 30 years, the Upper School has supported Hawthorne Country Day School (HCDS) with its annual student Toy Drive. HCDS is an educational program for individuals diagnosed with severe developmental disabilities, autism and other behavior disorders. This Christmas season, Iona Prep’s Student-Faculty Council (SFC) will be continuing its tradition of delivering toys to HCDS and is asking the entire school community to get involved. Using this link, families may sign up to purchase and return a specific gift for a student at Hawthorne Country Day.

Gifts must be delivered back to Iona Prep by Tuesday, Dec. 12. Gifts should be returned unwrapped with a note/Post-It specifying the student’s name and class number. All gifts should be delivered to the boxes outside of Mr. D'Alfonso's office just outside of the student lobby. Parents are asked not to spend more than $25 on a single gift.

On Dec. 12-13, students will join with the Upper School Mothers' Auxiliary to wrap the gifts that will be delivered to HCDS on Dec. 15.

Iona Prep's SFC thanks you for your generosity and participation in our annual Toy Drive, as without the entire Iona Prep community, the drive wouldn't be possible. If you have any questions or concerns, please write to Assistant Director of Campus Ministry Sean D'Alfonso.