Giving back this holiday season


Marianna Marsden

President of Encuentros club, Senior Eric Dominquez, leads an annual toy drive. The toys all go to Casa de Amparo in San Marcos.

Brooke Wasson, features editor

Giving is one of the most important aspects of the holidays. The toy drive, run by the Encuentros club at CHS, will benefit the Casa de Amparo. Located in San Marcos, Casa de Amparo is a shelter which provides safety, hope, and recovery programs for family members who suffer from abuse or neglect.  Hoping to improve lives by filling the holiday season with cheer, all the toys that were donated were sent directly to Casa de Amparo. Senior Eric Dominguez  and the rest of Encuentros club holds this toy drive to give back during the holidays.

Senior Eric Dominguez, a supporter of the Casa de Amparo, believes the holidays should be about giving to those in need.

“During this time of the year most people can turn to their families, but most of the people in these shelters don’t really have anyone to turn to because they have either been abandoned by their families, or abused by their families or just coming about of an abusive relationship,” Dominguez said. “It would be really nice for them to at least know that someone cares enough about them to bring a gift.”

Helping out with this organization comes easily for Dominguez because of his natural ability to give to others.

“Eric’s empathy, dedication to social issues, and work ethic are only a few of the many positive characteristics that define him,” history teacher Mr. Tamayo said. “What makes Eric unique is that while others wait, he acts.”

This organization  impacts the lives of the people in the shelters by reassuring them they have something to look forward to.

“These people have no one to spend the holidays with, so receiving these gifts allows them to get back the feeling of knowing that someone is there to comfort them.” Dominguez said.

Dominguez hopes to help people realize they are not alone by making the donations a personal experience for him, as well as the Casa de Amparo.

“This organization is different because he is making a personal connection, by transmitting the gifts straight from him to the people,” Tamayo said.

Dominguez also tries to improve CHS by helping in many additional campus activities.

“His drive to raise awareness about border issues, tutor students in AVID and the Armory, and in this case taking an active role in the toy-food drive for those less fortunate in these upcoming holidays, is an example of his generosity,” Tamayo said.

The Casa de Amparo is important to Dominguez  because he hopes everyone can enjoy the holidays as much as he and his family does.

“To me, this is an important organization that helps people in need, which is something I really try to support,” Dominguez said. “I personally believe in helping people who are less fortunate, and I think we need to see  a lot more of that in society.”