Motivated by his own hospital experience and desire to help others, seventh grader Andrew Sontag found a way to help countless children and their families have a more pleasant hospital stay. In just one week, he collected 1,067 new and used children’s DVDs from his classmates at Our Lady of Perpetual Help School in Ellicott City. All movies are G or PG and included classics such as Charlotte’s Web and Peter Pan.
While searching for just the right service project, Andrew learned about KidFlicks, an organization dedicated to creating entertainment libraries for children in need. Andrew recalls how much movies helped pass the time while visiting family in the hospital. “The hospital can be a scary place for children and their favorite movie can make them feel just a little bit closer to home.”
Founded in 2002 by four sisters in California, it is now an international charity that has distributed more than 68,100 DVDs to 681 hospitals. Their goal is to provide every Children’s Hospital and Pediatric Department in the country with a Kid Flicks “movie library.” The organization sends out DVDs to hospitals across the country in batches of 100.
Service and outreach are an integral part of student life at OLPH School. Andrew proposed the idea to the Principal, Mr. Pellechia, who gladly agreed to facilitate it through the school’s Outreach Representative, Mrs. Sandy McHugh, stating, “This is precisely what we love to see in our students. Andrew is taking initiative, inspiring his classmates, and living out the call to serve that we learn about every day at OLPH.” Andrew created a flyer and gave classroom presentations to inform them, as well as entice them with free ice cream for the class that brought in the most DVDs. Second grade rallied with a total of 267 DVDs from its students. It is wonderful to think about how much joy and comfort will come to the children and their families from being able to spend time with favorite movies.