SPRING HILL — Donations poured in for a month before Explorer K-8 School held its recent annual Family Share Night.
"The idea is that the families that have, can give, and the families that can receive, can receive," said reading and writing research teacher Jocelyn Fischer, who coordinated the event with assistant principal Lillian Ditucci. "It's to take care of our Explorer family."
As items came in, students sorted them into piles of clothes, purses, belts, toys, books, blankets and shoes. The clothes were further sorted for men, women, boys, girls and babies.
Everyone in the school was invited to enjoy a spaghetti dinner and selections by the chorus and band, directed by Theresa Chenail. Then they got to shop for free.
"The food was donated from our business partners," Ditucci said. "It was a true community effort." Nearly 20 businesses contributed to the event.
Eighth-grader Donny Forrester, 13, said he was there for the spaghetti, but he thought the event was a good idea.
"There's a lot of poor kids at school that don't have a lot of clothes and rich kids that do, and they give it away to the poor," he said.
The Tinny family — Rebecca, 42; William, 49; sixth-grader Alesha, 12, and Springstead High School freshman Brianna Coutts, 14 — was also enjoying the dinner.
"We came to support the school," said Rebecca Tinny.
The family is new to the area, and Rebecca Tinny was impressed.
"We never had something like this in Pasco County," she said. "I think it's wonderful. I brought in three bags of clothes that I was going to sell."
Her husband agreed.
"I think it's a great idea with times like they are," William Tinny said. "I think all the schools should adopt a program like this to help families."