Students bring hope, songs, blankets to cancer patients

Public magnet high school students making a difference

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Students from Frank H. Peterson Academies of Technology visited patients at the Mary Virginia Terry Cancer Center on Thursday. They gave out care packages and performed songs.

"You try to put some type of seed of hope in them so that they don't give up," said Mikayla Rogers, a senior at Frank H. Peterson Academies of Technology. "It was really deep. There was a lot of people out in the lobby and we all just got a chance to talk to them, just see where they're at in life and how they're doing, how they're getting through their cancer."

Students gave care packages to patients, including a blanket to help keep them comfortable during radiation or chemotherapy treatments. On each bag a powerful message read "You are so strong."

"We feel inspired when we come here by the patients because they have so much courage and they're so brave while they're experiencing a challenge in their lives," said MaryAnn Foster of Communities in Schools.

One of the students wrote and performed songs for patients and their families in the lobby.

"It's amazing to see them come out here and give out packages," said Tony Tyre, whose son has cancer. "They really need people to come in and be with people and show them that somebody cares for them."

The visit was organized through the Communites in Schools program and these students plan to continue making care packages and visiting the cancer center.

"It just really makes you appreciate life more and it gives you a new perspective to appreciate life, the life you were given," Rogers said.