While many residents along the eastern shore are still recovering from Hurricane Sandy, students at Dexter Community Schools are heeding the call for assistance.
Wylie Elementary School recently collected $1,000 in change from students to donate to the American Red Cross' disaster relief fund.
The donation was spearheaded by third grade student Haila Moazami, who organized a "Hats for the Hurricane" fundraiser on Nov. 16 and 19. In exchange for wearing a hat to school, students contributed money to the fund.
"I just really wanted to help (the hurricane victims)," Haila said. "You would want someone to help you if you were in that situation wouldn't you?"
Haila's mother, Stephanie Moazami, said she was impressed with her daughter's interest in helping the families affected by the hurricane.
"She put the proposal together all by herself and presented it to Principal Mary Cooper for approval," Moazami said. "I thought it was a great idea."
Kate Boynton, a teacher at Wylie Elementary, said more than half of the students at the school participated, donating their allowances and spare change to the relief effort.
"With Haila's leadership, the school raised over $1,000 to donate to the Red Cross. We are so proud of Haila and all our students at Wylie who reached out to help others in need," Boynton said.
Mary Kumbier, an outreach coordinator for the Washtenaw County Red Cross, said Moazami's leadership demonstrates the caliber of kindness in the Dexter community.
"It's nice to see students taking an active interest in their community and the rest of the country," Kumbier said.
Kumbier said so far the Red Cross has provided more than 7.5 million meals in New York and New Jersey and provided more than 77,000 hotel rooms for families displaced by Hurricane Sandy.