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50 GPS students and their families go shopping with Gilbert Fire & Rescue

Four Gilbert & Fire Rescue firefighters pose for a photo outside of the Kohl's store under the sign.In honor of Make a Difference Day on October 22, the Gilbert Fire & Rescue Department generously donated their time to shop at Kohl’s for 50 deserving students from Harris Elementary and Islands Elementary. Each of the students received a $150 gift card to buy new clothing and shoes. Firefighters, community groups, Mayor Brigette Peterson and GPS Superintendent Dr. Shane McCord all attended the event. The donations were made possible through the support of American Legion Merrell-Mitchell Post 39, East Valley Firefighter Charities and Kohl’s.

Make A Difference Day is one of the largest national single days of service in the U.S. It started in 1992 and has since spread to more than 30 countries around the world. More than 30 million volunteer hours have been logged as part of the annual event. This year, the Town of Gilbert encouraged residents, businesses and non-profit organizations to get involved in volunteer opportunities and spread #GilbertKindness throughout the month of October. 

Harris Elementary and Islands Elementary are both Title I schools in the Gilbert Public Schools district. A total of nine GPS schools are currently part of the federal program. Title I schools receive additional funding to provide support for students who are at risk of not meeting state academic standards. Schools meet the criteria based on total student enrollment and the number of students qualifying for free and reduced meals. 

Families and firefighters shop for GPS students

Dr. Shane McCord and Mayor Brigette Peterson pose for a photo in front of the Gilbert Fire step-and-repeat.

Families, firefighters and Kohl's employees gather at the front of the store before the shopping event.


Written by Kailey Latham