Hays High students collect over 300 pillows for domestic violence victims

Hays High National Honor Society (NHS) members donated more than 300 new pillows as part of the “Pillows of Peace” project, which is held in recognition of Domestic Violence Awareness Month.

The 352 new pillows, as well as173 sets of new pillow cases, collected by the Hays NHS will be heading for the Hays Caldwell Women’s Center (HCWC) and Hurricane Harvey survivors.

Hays County Pct. 2 Constable Michael Torres and Hays High National Honor Society sponsor Jennifer Weathers show off the truck jam packed with donations. (photo by Moses Leos III)

Hays High student Emma Cole (left) hands off a collection of pillows to Hays County Pct. 2 Constable Michael Torres and Hays High National Honor Society sponsor Jennifer Weathers Nov. 2. (photo by Moses Leos III)

“I congratulate the students, their teachers, the businesses and government offices for their compassion and hard work,” said Cynthia Bentley, President of the nonprofit Unforgettable Families and Friends. “It’s especially gratifying to see young people understand the need in their own communities and take steps to help.”

Bentley reached out to Hays High NHS students to distribute 4,000 flyers across 40 neighborhoods for the project.

The project collects donated pillows for clients of the HCWC to take with them when they leave the shelter.

The Pillows of Peace project began in New Orleans in 2007 when founder Mary Schultheis wanted to help a local women’s shelter.

She learned that women who take refuge in shelters rarely had more than the clothes on their backs.

Schultheis was reminded of the comfort her own pillow gave to her after a long, hard day, according to the HCWC website.

She had her pillow to hold for reassurance and wanted the women and children who suffer at the hands of abusers to have the same comfort when they left the shelter.

Pillows of Peace projects are now in Mississippi and Texas as well as Louisiana, with more than 3,000 pillows collected and distributed to date.

“I was blown away,” Bentley said. “This surpassed any number I had anticipated.”

Total donations of pillows and pillow cases collected during Pillow of Peace project

  • Hays HS National Honor Society – 352 pillows, 173 sets of new pillow cases
  • Kyle Police Department – 40 pillows and 40 sets of pillow cases
  • Lone Star Delights – 30 pillows
  • Ladies & Gents Barber and Hair Salon – 35 pillows
  • Hays County Human Resources Department – 20 pillows
  • San Marcos Kiwanis – 25 pillows

See more photos from the drive here. (photos by Moses Leos III)

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