AVRTHS Business Tech students organize Aztec Wishes gift drive

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CAPTION: The Business Tech Family helps to support children in need. (From left to right, top), teacher April Kelly, Amanda Alarcon, Kristin Tarves, Victoria Soto, Matthew Berry, Gabby George, Matthew Sanders, Dillon Kurzontkowski, Eduardo Freitas and teacher Donna Groccia. (Left to right bottom), Carol Ortiz, Lauren Sekenski, Shannon Boyle, and Jackie Washburn. Photo/Submitted

Marlborough – Assabet Valley Regional Technical High School is organizing their annual Aztec Wishes holiday gift drive, which benefits the children and their families served by the South Middlesex Opportunity Council (SMOC) in Marlborough. Last year, the school's staff and students adopted over 150 children in need of a brighter holiday season.

This year, the students are again reaching out to the public to help expand the number of families they can help. Individuals or organizations are urged to help make local children's wishes come true by either “adopting” a child or a family for the holidays and providing them with gifts and/or grocery gift cards, or by making donations to the program for the students to use for the wish lists.

“Some of these children and their families have so little and yet their wish lists are very modest,” said Donna Groccia, Assabet instructor. “They often ask for only a shirt and a small toy. It makes you want to buy even more for them! Despite the downturn in the economy over the past few years, people have continued to be generous and there has never been a child's wish list that went unadopted.

“In addition to adopting a child's wish list, people can also donate new toys or warm clothing. Grocery store and gas gift cards would make great additions to every gift basket going out to these local families.”

The deadline for toys and clothing is Dec. 7, but cash donations must be at the school by Dec. 2 to allow the “Business Tech elves” time to shop to fill any gaps.

Aztec Wishes was first organized by retired Business Technology teacher Judith McKinstry. The Business Technology students are hoping to surpass last year's numbers, and look forward to putting smiles on a lot of faces this holiday season. To participate, contact Donna Groccia or April Kelly at 1-508-485-9430 ext. 1446.