DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – Hundreds of Bishop Leibold students took an unconventional field trip Thursday. More than 230 students rolled up their sleeves to volunteer at 14 different charities across the metro for the school’s third annual Make a Difference Day.
At Dayton non-profit House of Bread, several small groups scrubbed walls, cleaned garbage bins, carried food donations into storage and helped organize a children’s play area.
It was fourth grade student Alex Anderson’s first time ever volunteering and he was already enjoying getting his hands dirty.
“You get to work with your friends and you get to help other people in need,” Anderson said.
Bishop Leibold principal Dr. Theodore Wallace explained the students spend several hours doing community service before returning to their school to debrief.
“There’s nothing like the experience,” Dr. Wallace said. “You can talk about it in class, and it’s our mission to serve those who have need as a Catholic school, but this really triggers conversation and perspective.”
Make a Difference Day was not established until after Alter High School senior Joey Liechty left Bishop Leibold, but he said the school still instilled the value of service while he was attending it.
“I’ve realized that you can make the biggest impact on someone’s day just by smiling and helping out, without asking anything,” said Liechty.
Leibold 8th grader Allie Hays said despite the hard work she expects during the annual event, she looks forward to making a difference every year.
“This isn’t just a time to get out of school, it’s a time to help,” Hays said. “Even the littlest things are very important.”