Walk For Warmth Marks 11th Year Helping Needy
Story by: Rachel Fettig
On Saturday, Dec. 1, South High held its 11th annual Walk for Warmth, raising some $4,000 for needy families in the City of Sheboygan.
It was started by retired Social Studies teacher Terry Parks, when he was joined by a few students who wanted to make a difference in the community. The torch was passed to Dan Ristow, one of South’s language arts teachers, who, with the help of the Cross Country team, puts everything together for Walk for Warmth.
The Walk for Warmth helped to raise money for people who need help to pay their heating bills in the wintertime.
“Most of these people need heat assistance determined by the Wisconsin Public Service criteria,” stated Ristow.
Many of the people who need help are the elderly, disabled, or those having financial difficulties. This year was different, because students did not have to raise money or donate money in order to receive a t-shirt. This was decided because the number of participants has declined and Ristow hoped that without being forced to donate, more people would join, although donations were still accepted from anyone who wished to donate.
“We decided to put an emphasis on people participating in the ‘spirit of walking’, rather than asking for donations due to the tough economic times,” said Ristow.
He also added that he wanted students to experience what the cold feels like for those who don’t have heat in their houses.Students can then learn to empathize with those community members.
Taylor Ruppel, a Cross Country team member, said that she helped out last year by signing people in, and handing out shirts and bracelets.
“I had a lot of fun because I got to be with friends and it was for a really good cause,” said Ruppel. The walk was about two miles and the 5K run was about 3.1 miles. The participants walk no matter what the weather is to understand the feeling of the cold.