Key Club spreads positivity

Julianna Poe, Trending Editor

On Thursday, Key Club met for their third official meeting of the year to assemble goodie bags for the janitors at Manhattan High.

“I loved being able to offer our members an opportunity to show our appreciation for everything the janitors have done, especially under these circumstances,” president Ashi Wickramasundara, junior, said.

Meeting in the commons after school, club members and officers filled two grocery bags full with treats. Key Club plans to distribute the sweets sometime this week.

“My favorite part was being able to see everyone safely interacting with each other,” Wickramasundara said. “Our community has been quite disconnected due to the virus, and getting to see some sort of familiarity again was exciting.”

Earlier this year, Key Club showed their appreciation for the teachers at Manhattan High by constructing appreciation cards to recognize their efforts. At their second meeting, club members designed dog and cat toys for local shelters. According to Wickramasundara, Key Club primarily focuses on dog toys, but at the suggestion of junior Grace Higgins, the club added cat toys into the mix due to an abundance of cats in shelters.

“I do think that our meetings for this year have been successful,” Wickramasundara said, “considering the new procedures we follow and not being able to meet as frequently as usual.”

Currently, Key Club hasn’t planned out any big projects this year, but aspires to focus on something to improve the Manhattan community concerning the ongoing pandemic.

“As of now, we don’t have anything fully fleshed out,” Wickramasundara said. “We’re hoping to make masks and donate them to people in the community who may not have access or the means necessary to own multiple and/or effective masks.”

This school year, according to Wickramadunara, Key Club hopes to represent “a beacon of hope” for the Manhattan community and high school, especially “during a time where tensions are high.”

“We want to give back to the community, offer kids a safe place where they can get involved and interact with other students at school and [symbolize] a beacon of hope,” Wickramasundara said. “So much has happened since last spring, and we know that recent and ongoing events have and will continue to affect our community members in different ways.”