The St. Cecelia’s in Glen Carbon Knights of Columbus chapter has a tradition of a tootsie roll giveaway each year with contributions going to the Edwardsville District 7 special education program.

Once again this fall, the Knights of Columbus chapter had the tootsie roll donation day and this past week, a check for $9,500 was donated to the district’s program.

Edwardsville Assistant Superintendent Lynda Andre, who is also in charge of curriculum, said the donations allow District 7 to provide additional activities and experiences for students with special needs.

“In the past, the funds have been used to support swimming lessons at the YMCA and field trips throughout the community,” Andre said. “This past year, funds will be used to support District 7 student participation in the Special Olympics and to purchase equipment such as life vests for the adapted swimming program.”

St. Cecelia’s in Glen Carbon Knights of Columbus chapter grand knight Walter Jones said he is extremely proud of the fact that the group has donated $83,000 to the District 7 special needs program since 2003.

The St. Cecelia Knights of Columbus chapter donated more than $9,000 to Edwardsville School District 7's special needs program at a school board meeting this past week.

“We donate 95 percent of the proceeds to District 7’s special needs program,” Jones said. “We donate a small amount to the state level office for Special Olympics and a small amount that goes toward group homes as far as adults with special needs.”

Each year, the K of C volunteers position people in front of Wal-Mart entrances and also two intersections, one on Main and Meredian and the other on Old Cottonwood and Troy Roads with cans and each car that stops gets a free tootsie roll.

“This year was a really successful year,” Jones said. “We stand out there but people are really generous and it has grown over the years. We realize putting this information out has helped us keep generating more and more funds and it goes to good cause. We see it makes a difference and we want to do any little bit we can to help.”

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