Instead of trying to pick a single recipient for a service project during Catholic Schools Week (Jan. 30-Feb. 5), St. John’s Catholic School in Brunswick decided to pick one for each day.

“Every day, we encourage our students to show kindness, respect, and concern for others, both in the school and community,” said Principal Shelly Wheeler. “During Catholic Schools Week, this is a great way to convey that message while also helping those in need.”

MondayTedford HousingStudents will gather new personal care items for Tedford Housing, an organization that has provided emergency shelter and supportive housing for the area’s homeless for over 30 years. Tedford also offers homeless prevention services, case management and social service assistance.

TuesdayPreble StreetStudents will gather new personal care items, hand warmers, totes and backpacks for those being served at Preble Street, an organization in Portland that assists people experiencing problems with homelessness, housing, hunger and poverty.

WednesdayLocal Nursing HomesStudents will gather fuzzy socks, candy and lotions for residents at several area nursing homes.

ThursdayMidcoast Humane SocietyStudents will gather spare change and cash to raise money for the Midcoast Humane Society, an organization in Brunswick that helps nearly 3,500 animals each year.


FridayCare Net of Midcoast MaineStudents will collect baby items like diapers, wipes, food and toys for Care Net of Midcoast Maine, a pregnancy help center created to help women and men make informed decisions about unexpected pregnancies. The organization has served hundreds of women in the area since opening in 2002.

In addition to the service projects, the school will host a variety show at the St. John’s Community Center on Monday at 6 p.m.; a meet and greet with Fr. Phil Tracy, the new pastor of All Saints Parish, of which St. John’s is a part, on Tuesday; a career day with speakers from local businesses and organizations on Wednesday; schoolwide Bingo on Thursday; and a religion fair and STEM challenges on Friday.

The school’s traditional “Minute to Win It” competitions will also return this year. The contest features small and fun tasks that need to be completed in a minute or less, like teacher and students trying to empty a tissue box one tissue at a time. Students will also have dress theme days, including dressing like someone from the past, dressing like a teacher, dressing like an Olympian, and dressing in neon colors.  

Catholic Schools Week is an annual celebration of Catholic education in Maine and across the United States. For more information about Catholic education in Maine, visit

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