Project Lead the Way (PLTW) Biomedical Science students at Highland High School (HHS) are giving Santa a little help this year.

The HHS Scrub Club held a collection for senior citizens at a local nursing home and called it Operation: Elder Elves.  Students gathered items that would keep seniors healthy and warm this winter including scarves, gloves, beanies, and personal care items.

Students delivered the gifts and visited with senior citizens at Evergreen Bakersfield Post Acute Care after school on Monday, December 19th.

This special community service project was an idea HHS Scrub Club President, Sadie Armijo, brought to the group.  She and her family had been thinking about tackling something like this for a few years, but realized they needed a bigger group of volunteers to make it truly successful.

When Mrs. Urquidez called a Scrub Club meeting to decide on a holiday project that we could do, Operation: Elder Elves immediately popped into my head.  It feels good to organize something like this.  It is such a good cause and I’m so glad that we could make it a larger event.” – Sadie Armijo, Scrub Club President, HHS

Operation: Elder Elves not only assists those in need, it also helps biomedical science students with their future health careers allowing an opportunity to experience how patients live in hospitals or other health care settings.

“We learned about some of the necessary components of health care. Rather than simply thinking of medicine and medical equipment in health care, we will now consider things like lotion, shampoo, blankets, and socks important too.” – Sadie Armijo, Scrub Club President, HHS

These generous students donated more than 280 items to help keep the residents healthy and warm this winter, as well as 40 books to help them exercise their minds year round.

“We had just a short time at the skilled nursing home, but the students enjoyed visiting the seniors and sharing what future health career they hope to work toward.” – Kristen Urquidez, Biology Teacher, HHS

The Scrub Club at HHS is already planning ideas for a spring event to organize games to play with the residents.

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