Reaching out through Christmas celebrations


Photo by Savannah Downs

Sophomore Savannah Downs volunteers with Key Club at last year’s Kiwanis Christmas party for Action club and Opportunities. This year’s party will be held on Dec. 9.

Story by Savannah Downs, staff writer

Texas High Key Club will help out at the annual Kiwanis, Aktion Club and Opportunities Christmas party on Dec. 9.

“It’s a Christmas party that Kiwanis Club throws for Aktion Club, which is adults with disabilities in the community and so our job is to give Christmas stockings and stuff them with things that the Aktion Club members would need,” Key Club sponsor Rachel Epley said. “We give them toiletries; we might give them socks, scarves and gloves for winter. We get to go and eat with them, we get to dance with them, and we just have a great party.”

Aktion Club is a group of men of all ages 18+ with mental disabilities. This party is created for them to have fun, meet new people, eat snacks and meet Santa Claus.

“This is probably one of the most exciting events we attend because we get to interact with Kiwanis Club and the community and Aktion Club, which is kind of like our parent club and so we get to really focus on helping others,” Epley said. “It really is exciting to get together and work with other people that have disabilities and give back to them.”

Members who attend the party create special holiday memories that will last a lifetime.  

“My favorite part about the party is probably the dancing after we eat because that’s when their personalities really come out and blossom and they enjoy it so much,” Key Club President Katherine Stoeckl said. When they start dancing they get so happy and it’s really contagious.”

At the Christmas Party, Aktion Club and Opportunities members get to interact with Key Club members, make new friends and talk to others that they normally don’t communicate with.

“I enjoy the Christmas party because we get to get in touch with some of the people that you don’t normally get to see around town and at activities. Opportunities and Aktion Club is there [at the party] and they’re really sweet people and have a lot to say,” Stoeckl said. “They just need somebody to talk to because they’ve already talked to all the people that are there. They love to meet new people and share their experiences because they do not get that much exposure like other adults would.”

Key Club members will have the opportunity to attend this event and help their community.

“I think [Key Club members] should attend because it’s a really rewarding experience because they get to get in touch with people they don’t normally have contact with and it really helps the community to not separate into different groups,” Stoeckl said.