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Woodland Hills Club Raising Money for Swissvale Fire Victim

A local student was badly injured in Saturday's fire, and tragically lost her brother.

The Interact Club is raising money in a variety of ways to help a female senior student who was injured in a

That student, who is not being identified by the school or the Fire Department because the fire is under investigation, lost her brother, identified as Rayseun Hall by the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, in the blaze.

“This family lost everything, so we want to do everything we can to get them back on their feet,” said Interact Club sponsor of , who also is the high school librarian.

The female student injured in the fire is in the hospital, recovering from her injuries, he added.

The Interact Club serves as a junior type of community outreach and volunteer group, also working with the local Forest Hills Rotary.

Rotary said his organization is giving $400 in Wal-Mart gift cards to the funds to help support the family affected by this tragedy. He also added that in Regent Square is donating $200 in gift cards.

Marilyn Keteles of Churchill, co-sponsor of the club and Woodland Hills teacher, said the group meets weekly to come up with new ideas for projects.

“Knowing this just happened, we all know her and started to brainstorm ideas of what we could do to help,” Keteles said. “As the Interact Club, we came up with some good ideas and it kept snowballing. We collaborated with the ideas and came up with several things we are going to do as a club.”

Those efforts include a high school dance to be held Dec. 2, with all money raised going to the student’s family, selling $1 get well cards across the school and collecting money at the upcoming Shaffer Idol talent show at Shaffer Elementary in Churchill.

“I have a student in my class who is a volunteer firefighter who was on the scene,” Keteles said. “He told me about it on Monday and he discussed the devastation and the impact it even had on him.”

Keteles said the students are passionate about helping the family recover in any way that they can.

Dalal Ghanem of Wilkins Township, a Woodland Hills senior, said the injured student’s Facebook page is flooded with well wishes and words of love.

“All of the students are really coming together to let her know that we are thinking about her and her family,” Ghanem said.

The club is looking for donations, preferably in gift cards, to help the victims reestablish some sort of stability in their lives, McGuire said.

Donations can be sent to:

Woodland Hills Interact Club
Kevin McGuire/Marilyn Keteles
2550 Greensburg Pike
Pittsburgh, PA 15221

For more information, e-mail McGuire at mcguke@whsd.net.

Erica Riley November 17, 2011 at 06:23 PM
this show that we (Woodland Hills) can come together when one of our own is in a time of need. This generosity make me proud to be a Woodland Hills student.

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