La Salle Prep photo
La Salle Prep photo

MILWAUKIE — The students of La Salle Prep kicked off their annual Christmas drive in November. This year, La Salle will support 30 families from neighboring Lot Whitcomb Elementary School who live at or below the federal poverty line. La Salle students are asked to support the Christmas drive by donating goods, money, or volunteering to wrap holiday gifts.

This is the seventh year that La Salle has managed the drive.

“The Christmas Drive provides the La Salle community the opportunity to truly live out our motto, ‘Enter to Learn, Leave to Serve,’" says Stephanie Blumenson, La Salle’s director of service.

Often, when people think of poverty and injustice, Blumenson explains, they think of developing countries, with malnourished children.

"Poverty and injustice literally exist in our own backyard," she says. "Some of the Christmas drive families look out their windows every day and see La Salle. The Christmas drive helps us live out what it means to be Lasallians.”

The drive is just part of the close relationship between the private Catholic high school and public elementary school around the corner. In June, North Clackamas Schools Superintendent Tim Mills presented La Salle Prep with the “2012 Touch of Excellence Award” to acknowledge the school’s exceptional support of Lot Whitcomb students and families. Last year, La Salle packed more than 1,500 lunches with the Backpack Buddies program to help provide weekend meals for children.

Each Thursday afternoon, a group of La Salle students makes its way to Lot Whitcomb to spend time with children they refer to as “our Lot Whitcomb brothers and sisters.”  

La Salle will be accepting donations for the Christmas drive until Dec. 13.