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Three kids donate 100 cans to food bank

Three local kids held their own food drive to help those less fortunate this Thanksgiving. From left to right: Matt Leitner, 12; Ember Lucas, 10; and Ava Lucas, 6. (Special photo)

Three local kids held their own food drive to help those less fortunate this Thanksgiving. From left to right: Matt Leitner, 12; Ember Lucas, 10; and Ava Lucas, 6. (Special photo)

COVINGTON — Three local students started their own food drive called Because We Can and collected 100 cans of food to donate to the needy.

Ten-year-old Ember Lucas and her sister, Ava Lucas, 6, of South Salem Elementary in Newton County, along with their friend Matt Leitner, 12, of General Ray Davis Middle in Rockdale County, donated all of the canned goods they collected from their drive.

The idea for the food drive was spawned from Ember Lucas when she came home from school one day and told her mother, Debbie Lucas, that she wanted to do something to help the local community. In collaboration with Leitner, the Lucas girls distributed flyers at various locations throughout the area, including their mother’s shop in Covington, SpendThrift.

Starting their food drive at the beginning of October, the kids’ goal was to collect 50 cans by Oct. 31, but they exceeded their goal by obtaining 65 by the end of the month. They continued the drive into November and had accumulated 100 cans by Nov. 15, enough to fill an entire shopping cart.

The kids braved Tuesday’s cold and rainy weather to deliver and unload their canned goods to the Community Food Pantry in Covington. They were able to hand over the donations just in time for the food bank to prepare for its holiday dinner.

“We really care about our local community,” said Ember Lucas, who recently joined her school’s Beta Club.

“It’s what Thanksgiving is all about,” Debbie Lucas said.