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Students Raise Funds for Emergency Shelter

A man wept inside the Emergency Shelter of Northern Kentucky after students from Covington Catholic High School and Notre Dame Academy presented a check worth $2,405 Thursday morning.

The man found himself homeless after a drunk-driving crash landed him in jail for forty-five days. By the time he got out, he had lost his job, his home, and his possessions. 

"These people took me in, gave me clean clothes, fed me, and because of the contributions you give, they can do this for me," the man told the students and their principals.

"I wouldn't have nowhere to go."

For the second consecutive year the two neighboring Park Hills schools held fundraisers to collect money for the Covington shelter that houses the homeless during the winter months and operates a different program in the summertime that helps homeless men get their lives back on track.

Director Rachael Winters said the contribution from the students will help cover the utilities at the building, formerly the Dressman Health Center, for the next two months.

"We really appreciate it," Winters said. "It helps us keep the doors open and keeps us doing what we're doing."

The students put together a battle-of-the-sexes volleyball match between students at both schools and also hosted a faculty match to raise funds. Additionally, the boys at Covington Catholic contributed money in return for the opportunity to dress out of uniform for a day.

Principal Robert Rowe said that his students get a lot back for what they give and that they appreciate the opportunity to see what the less fortunate may need, a sentiment shared by Notre Dame principal Laura Koehl.

Cov Cath students Will Henry and Zach Toebben and Notre Dame students Nicole Zembrodt and Megan Beischel, all 18-years old, were on hand to present the check on behalf of their fellow students.

The appreciation shared by the homeless man was a significant moment for them to see their work in action. "There's a big difference between looking at things online and seeing them in person," Henry said. "That was really moving for me."

Written by Michael Monks, editor & publisher of The River City News

Photo: Check presentation at the Emergency Shelter in Covington/RCN