Temple Christian

The "Love Works" class at Temple Christian will be collecting cleaning supplies for Harmony House through April 5.

MANSFIELD — A class of juniors and seniors at Temple Christian has started a school-wide drive to benefit Harmony House.

Love Works is a weekly elective led by Kim Running, a math teacher at Temple Christian. Running tasked her students to come up with a project that would help either the school or the community.

“I think right now, especially with the pandemic, it's hard on a lot of people. Helping other people during this time, it means a lot,” said Matthew Henry, a senior. “I know it's a hard time, especially for homeless people because the shelters may not even have enough room.”

The students’ initial idea was to have a food drive, but staff at Harmony House said cleaning supplies was an even greater need, since they’d just received a large donation of food.

“They would have been grateful for the food either way, but we decided that if cleaning supplies was their biggest need, then that’s what we would do,” Running said.

Each grade is collecting donations of toilet paper, paper towels, all-purpose cleaner, bleach, laundry detergent and sponges. The drive began March 15 and will continue until April 5. Whichever class brings in the greatest quantity of supplies will win a pizza party.

Running said she was shocked by the amount students have already collected.

“I feel like we could build a fort out of toilet paper in my room right now,” she said. “We’re having a very big rivalry between first and fifth grade. It gets competitive when there’s a pizza party on the line."

Running created the Love Works elective course last year after Mansfield Baptist Temple had to cancel its Love Works Initiative service project due to COVID-19.

Community members can also participate by dropping off cleaning supplies at Mansfield Baptist Temple weekdays from 9 to 4 p.m.

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Staff reporter focused on education and features. Clear Fork alumna. Always looking for a chance to practice my Spanish. You can reach me at katie.ellington@richlandsource.com