Wooden cut out human deciding to crowdfunding

Marana Middle School students are asking you to help ensure local families in need have a holiday season that’s merry and bright by donating to the Charlie’s Angels Program.

As part of the program, Marana Middle School eighth-grade student Marquez was among the students who sent out letters to various local institutions, including the Marana News.

“It makes our community a happier place, we grow when we give back to our community,” Marquez wrote.

Charlie’s Angels was established in 1992 by former language arts teacher Diane (Riggs) Willsey. Willsey’s class raised $200 to help four kids celebrate the holidays. Wilsey previously named the program Angel’s Kids, but it was renamed Charlie’s Angels in honor of a faculty member who died in 2005. 

“Charlie was essential in helping us locate students that were underserved and in coordinating the delivering of packages,” said Marana Middle School teacher Ivy Sweeney, who serves as Charlie’s Angels coordinator and fundraiser. “Her daughter, son-in-law, granddaughters and great granddaughters shop with us every year.”

Marana Unified School District facilitates a holiday care program that relays specific families in need to Charlie’s Angels. The program has expanded to include fundraising for holiday gifts, clothing, and supplies for families displaced by fires. Charlie’s Angels also partners with Safeway to provide families with turkey dinners during the holidays.

“We even helped a family that needed a washing machine,” Sweeney said. “We organized a washer and dryer donation for the family in need.”

MMS students also get involved with Charlie’s Angels. They do letter writing campaigns and help buy holiday gifts for children. Sweeney arranges a shopping trip to Walmart with students and faculty. At this event, students are asked to spend $100 on each child in need. Their goal is to find clothing for $50, a holiday gift for $40, and stocking stuffers for $10.

“Our students learn the value of service, whether they are being of service or receiving service,” Sweeney said. “The most rewarding thing is watching the kids shop within their budget and wanting the child they are shopping for to receive the most and the best that their $100 can buy.”

Sweeney said no donation is too small and more donations helps more children get sponsored. 


Send donations to Marana Middle School at 11285 West Grier Road, Marana, AZ 85653.

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