Country Day Class of 2019 Celebrates Eight Years of Community Service Project Leadership
Students Aim to Collect 500 Turkeys During 8th Annual Turkey Drive

Press release Emily Allshouse

Sacramento, CA – On Thursday, November 15, Sacramento Country Day School will host its 8th Annual Turkey Drive benefiting Sacramento Food Bank and Family Services. Initiated by the Class of 2019 as fifth grade students in 2011, Country Day’s Annual Turkey Drive has become a special annual school-wide community giving tradition.

Each year, Country Day collects turkeys to provide a Thanksgiving meal for local families in need. Faculty, parent and student volunteers collect fresh and frozen turkeys at morning drop off. The Turkey Drive has come a long way since its first year, when it collected 101 turkeys. In 2017, Country Day families donated an impressive 446 turkeys and $1,660 in cash donations. This year, students have set the goal of collecting 500 turkeys during the drive.

Members of the Class of 2019 who founded the Turkey Drive include: Gabi Alvarado; Jack Christian; Josh Friedman; Bianca Hansen; Emily Hayes; Heidi Johnson; Nate Jakobs; Lia Kaufman; Abby LaComb; Blake Lincoln; Kyra LaFitte; Sophie Naylor; Chardonnay Needler; Luca Procida; Alex Rogawski; Tori Van Vleck; Mohini Rye; Joe Zales; and Allison Zhang.

Senior Luca Procida, who also is leading Country Day’s 13th annual Run to Feed the Hungry Team alongside Middle School Ambassador Andrew (’25) and Lower School Ambassadors Ella (’26), Ellie (’26), and Sophia (‘28), reflected on his community service experience at Country Day.

“Founding the turkey drive in fifth grade and joining the Run to Feed the Hungry in Middle School helped open my eyes to a completely different world. Hearing at a young age just how many people our efforts would be helping was astounding. I am happy that both events do so much to bring both the SCDS and Sacramento community together. The turkey drive is one event I look forward to all year. It is so rewarding to see a little kid run up with a turkey and a smile, happy to be involved in giving back to the community. The way that the whole community comes together is truly inspiring, and it has taught me how much of a difference one group’s efforts make in the community,” said Procida.

Over the last 12 years, Country Day has raised more than $121,000 (nearly $250,000 with corporate matching) through its Run to Feed the Hungry team. Last year, Team SCDS collected $10,235.89 to earn back the title of Top Fundraising Team and return the Run to Feed the Hungry Trophy to the school. 

“I am humbled by the leadership demonstrated by the Class of 2019. As 10- and 11-year-olds in fifth grade, they had a vision for helping their community and have successfully led that effort for eight years,” said Head of School Lee Thomsen. “Now as seniors, they will pass the torch to the next generation of Country Day student leaders. Thank you to the Class of 2019.”