Howard students aid Gingerbread House

Daily Light staff writer

Waxahachie ISD’s Howard Junior High School students gathered stuffed animals for their Random Acts of Kindness service project on April 12. Throughout the school year, designated teams have orchestrated ways to give back to the community, and this group of eighth-graders picked the Gingerbread House (Ellis County Children’s Advocacy Center) to assist.

J.W. Tabor, an HJHS eighth-grade history teacher, helped coordinate this effort, and he was pleased with the response.

“We’ve been doing this for about a month and a half,” Tabor said. “They (students) brought the animals into their pride time (homeroom class) teacher. They could also go to the library and turn them in to get rid of their fines, which was one of the incentives.”
Tabor added there were a few reasons why the Gingerbread House was selected.

“First of all they’re awesome,” Tabor said. “They do a lot of great things for kids. And, it seemed like the natural thing to do – kids helping kids.”

Gingerbread’s forensic interviewer Teresa Evans was also impressed with what the students gathered.

“We appreciate Howard Junior High and Mr. Tabor for thinking and offering us these stuffed animals for the children (at Gingerbread House),” Evans said. “Every child that comes in for an interview gets to take one home with them after the interview.”

Jamie English, who is a counselor at Gingerbread House, reiterated how important these cuddly animals are.

“It’s a child-friendly place for kids to come who have been through some pretty traumatic things,” English said. “They get to take home an animal as a comfort thing.”

One of the eighth-grade students, who gave a helping hand with this project, was Kenneth Allen, and he was honored to help with it. Allen was happy to know that 310 animals were collected.

“I think it’s a good thing for the kids,” Allen said. “If some of them are homeless, it will let them know that someone cares.”
Danikka Zedlitz shared much the same insight.

“I think this really is good for the kids who don’t have anything,” Zedlitz said. “I think this will help with the hard times at their homes.”

For more information on the Gingerbread House, call 972-937-1870 or check out It is located at 425 E. Ross St., Waxahachie.

Contact Colleen at 469-517-1452 or

(Used with permission)

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