The Cross Cultural Center is holding a holiday gift basket drive through Nov. 10 to help make this Thanksgiving brighter for students in need.

“Many students are one paycheck away from an empty closet,” said Carrie Afuso, auxiliary coordinator of student affairs.

Less fortunate students will be able to use their saved holiday money to buy something special when they would have had to use that money to provide basic staples this month for their family.

“There is a lot of pressure for students to contribute to the family household,” Afuso said.

About 80 clubs and divisions are donating non-perishable food items that can typically be found in cupboards such as tuna, rice, beans, soup, canned vegetables, oatmeal and sugar. These items, along with ‘wish list’ items will provide families with enough food for at least a week.

Household necessities are also welcome, like toothbrushes, soap and shampoo.

Another option for the clubs and divisions is to donate a $35 gift certificate to a grocery store for perishable items such as meat, eggs and milk.

This would only require about $5 from each student.

Recipients are chosen from lists provided by the California Work Opportunities and Extended Opportunity Programs and Services.

“The need is really increasing,” said Afuso. “The economy is down and money is being used for priority choices including housing, medicine and bus fare.”

Clubs should turn in baskets with all of the requested items to CC-105 no later than 4 p.m. on Nov. 10.

 Those clubs who do will receive ten hours of ICC service credit per basket. Also, the club and department that turn in the most baskets get prizes.

For information, please contact Brittany Ulloa in the Cross Cultural Center Office of Student Affairs.

Britney Ulloa, 21, an intern at PCC as well as this year’s holiday basket organizer, begins collecting canned food for under-privileged PCC students in the Student Affairs Office. The food drive began Oct. 17 and will continue until Nov. 10. (Wendy Gomez / Courier )

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