Pioneer Valley High School UNICEF Club members. (Courtesy photo)

The spirit of helping others is alive at Pioneer Valley High School, where the PVHS UNICEF Club has been organized for the purpose of helping the children of the world.

The club has raised and will soon donate $3,000 to the United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund. UNICEF works in more than 190 countries and territories to reach the most disadvantaged children and adolescents; and to protect the rights of all children.

“Every penny counts,’’ said club president Evelyn Letona Robles. “The value of the service we’re putting in to the club is too valuable to describe in words. The feeling you get knowing that your dedication and time is helping the life of someone your age or younger, struggling to survive the effects of poverty or war in another country, is very rewarding.

“We’re youth helping youth. I believe we’re living proof that making a change in this world, no matter how big or small, has no age limitations. Anyone can help change the world positively if there is purpose, heart, and motivation behind it.”

The club, 29 students strong and advised by teacher Roxana Maldonado, used multiple strategies to gather funds. They hosted Jamba Juice sales; Blaze Pizza nights; and a Trick-Or-Treat for UNICEF fundraiser, where small boxes were placed in several classrooms. Club members also asked students to take the boxes with them during trick-or-treating and ask for a donation instead of candy.

The PVHS UNICEF Club is in the process of donating the money and has submitted the paperwork to the business office, Robles said. The donation process should be complete in about week.

The club is also generous when it comes to giving credit where credit is due: “We as a club owe our success to advisor Roxana Maldonado,’’ Robles said. “Over the years, Ms. Maldonado has provided nothing but her time, dedication, and support into everything the PVHS UNICEF Club has accomplished.

“We appreciate the effort she provides every day to improve our club and help it fulfill its goals.”