Teen creates school closet for students in need

Donated items can be worn by anyone

By Stephen Anthony Sobek
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PORT ALLEN, Louisiana - An eighth grader in Louisiana has created a special closet in his middle school filled with clothes and school supplies for less privileged students to take, CBS News reported.

Chase Neyland-Square, 13, runs "PAM's Pantry" in a closet behind a stage in Port Allen Middle School's gymn, CBS said.

It's filled with donated clothes that can be worn by any student who needs them.

"I know that everybody doesn't have things and I'm fortunate to have things that other people don't have," he told WAFB. "And I look at it as sometimes, how would I feel in that situation?"

Families from the community can also take clothes from the closet at any time. There are also a variety of school supplies, hygiene products and shoes.

The idea came from the school's SPARK (Student Program for Arts, Recreation and Knowledge) program. Students brainstorm ideas and then implement them.

"We ask them what they want to do to make the school better and through that, we have changed drastically some of the things that we do here at Port Allen Middle School," said Principal Jessica Major, who started the program in 2016.

Other ideas to come from the program include extended recess, brightened hallways and more library books, CBS said.

But Neyland-Square said he has plans for his project.

"I'm going to come back and continue working on PAM's Pantry," Neyland-Square said. "I'm hoping one day I can turn it into a non-profit organization."

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