Catholic schools help provide relief to hurricane victims


By Lindsay Steele
The Catholic Messenger

Schools, parishes and individuals around the Diocese of Davenport are striving to provide disaster relief for people devastated by natural disasters in the nation’s southeast over the past two weeks.

Nita Carlson
Notre Dame-Burlington student Anna Tillo hands a case of bottled water to Jaxon Osborn as Christian Schwenker sorts goods inside the semi-trailer parked outside the school Sept. 8. The school collected water and cleaning items in response to Hurricane Harvey.

Notre Dame Catholic School in Burlington collected items and put them in a semi-trailer for victims of Hurricane Harvey that socked Texas late last month. The school sought bottled water, cleaning supplies and other items. Employees of Four Seasons Excavating and Landscape, which donated the semi-trailer, then drove to the Knights of Columbus in Houston. From there, the resources were to be distributed where needed by a relief services group.

Assumption High School in Davenport and Bettendorf High School showed solidarity with Texas at the varsity football game Aug. 31, with student sections from both schools dressing in Texas-themed attire. During the game, Assumption collected $1,639.77 in donations from the stands for the American Red Cross’ hurricane recovery efforts. Bettendorf raised money in their stands, as well.


St. Catherine of Sienna School in Port Arthur, Texas, sustained much damage due to the flooding from Hurricane Harvey. Principal Haidee Todora is a friend of Jeanne Von Feldt, principal of All Saints Catholic School in Davenport. The Texas school lost all of its desks, carpeting, gym floor, books and more to the hurricane. In response, All Saints had an out-of-dress-code day and every student that participated brought in $1. The $500 raised went to the Texas school. Todora emailed VonFeldt with a message of gratitude for the school’s generosity.

St. Joseph Catholic School in DeWitt is supporting the National Catholic Education Association (NCEA) hurricane relief campaign, in which each student donates $1 to the Hurricane Harvey fund. St. Joe’s Student Council is promoting this effort through announcements and a flyer sent home.

Regina Catholic Education Center in Iowa City held a $1 jeans day for Catholic Hurricane Relief USA on Sept. 8. Students raised $2,780.63 for the cause.

Prince of Peace Catholic School in Clinton is attempting to get in touch with Prince of Peace Catholic School in Houston to see what the Texas school needs as a result of Hurricane Harvey damage. “They are not in the office because of the storm,” said the Clinton school’s Development Director Karen Witt. In the meantime, they are watching to see what Hurricane Irma will do in Florida. The school plans to raise money for disaster relief in Texas and Florida through the Red Cross.

Hurricane Irma hit Florida this past weekend. Schools that have been busy raising money or collecting items for Hurricane Harvey victims said they hoped to find ways to support disaster relief in Florida, as well.

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