BELMONT — Belmont resident and fifth grader, Evelyn Ellis-Haines, organized a clothing drive at Canterbury Elementary with the goal of helping families facing homelessness this winter. With the support of her classmates and teachers, the drive collected over 700 items.

“We are thrilled at the response,” said Ellis-Haines’ teacher, Kimberly Wieck. “Our school has just over 100 students and to collect this many winter clothing items is really incredible.”

The clothing drive was part of Ellis-Haines’ Kid Governor campaign to end poverty. The Kid Governor program is a national award-winning civics program for fifth graders, led by the New Hampshire Institute for Civics Education and the New Hampshire Institute of Politics, with support from the New Hampshire State House and Department of Education. 

Although ultimately Ellis-Haines did not win her bid for New Hampshire’s Kid Governor, she is going ahead with her poverty-fighting plans. “I have a really supportive school and supportive friends,” said Ellis-Haines. “At the candidate forum, Mrs. Sununu said if we [the candidates] didn’t win, we should do our projects anyway, so I decided I wanted to do it.”

On Christmas Eve, Ellis-Haines delivered her hundreds of winter items to the Salvation Army in Laconia, supplier of the Carey House, which offers shelter to men, women and families in the Lakes Region.

“I’m really glad I could do this and I want to do more,” said Ellis-Haines, “I want to help people.”

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