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Interact helps homeless Manteca students
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From left, Interact Club officers Aman Falol (treasurer) and Michael Yoon (president) donates $400 to Lynda Donelson (homeless liaison) and Peg Krueger (school nurse) of Manteca Unified Health Services to help homeless students Tuesday at Sierra High. - photo by VINCE REMBULAT
The cost for school can add up.

Just ask Aman Falol and Michael Yoon.

They’re currently seniors, discovering that expenses for their final year of high school have proven steep.

Both are also grateful that they have families who can afford for them the extras.

At the same time, Falol and Yoon knew of their peers who aren’t as fortunate, in particular, the homeless in Manteca Unified.

Lynda Donelson, who is the district’s homeless liaison, estimates that about 700 students are listed as homeless. She and Peg Krueger, who is a school nurse, are both in the MUSD Health Services, adding that grant funding provides only certain needs for these youngsters.

“But these are restricted,” Donelson said.

Enter the Manteca Interact Club, Rotary International’s service club for young people ages 12 through 18. Yoon is the president there with Aman serving as treasurer, with meetings held at Sierra High.

They were made aware of the homeless problem among their peers via a recent story that appeared in the Manteca Bulletin.

“We wanted to do something about it,” said Yoon.

Interact did just that, donating $400 on Tuesday to MUSD Health Services. Aman indicated that the money was made possible via various projects, from the annual Omelet Breakfast with Rotary to the Safe Halloween event.

“I’m just happy that we’re helping out our peers,” Aman said. “It’s our way of giving back.”

Donelson and Krueger noted that this marked the first time that a service group of any kind made a donation to the district’s homeless problem affecting students.

They said the money is earmarked to help these youngsters afford the extras not covered by grants, including some of the expenses necessary for their senior year.