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Compassionate middle schoolers

Photo by Phil Pfuehler

Kylee McLain, president of the Student Council of Meyer Middle School, said she was "proud to support a worthy cause" like Our Neighbors' Place, the new name of the River Falls homeless shelter project.

Last week McLain, daughter of Jim and Maria McLain, gave a $500 check to key homeless shelter volunteers Sue Watters (left) and Mary Jo Sutton. Student Council advisor Eileen Eggen said the council's fundraising was the result of dedication and persistence.

The students sold candy in October and December, carnations in February, and took part in General Mills' Box Tops for Education and Kemps and Land-O-Lakes milk caps programs. Last year the Student Council bought bookshelves for the school library in memory of the late Assistant Principal Greg Danke.

The group forming Our Neighbors' Place only began last February after reports of local homelessness surfaced. The search is still on for a permanent overnight shelter but an existing support network is already operating.

Watters said Our Neighbors' Place will be formally introduced to the community during River Falls Days. A booth featuring an interactive cardboard house will be placed in the public library Saturday and later downtown at the Kids Entertainment Area. Children can learn what it feels like to be homeless. Brochures will be available and a donation jar will be out for those who want to give toward this cause.

Watters said the Our Neighbors' Place interactive display house will be seen at upcoming fundraising and community events.