Eagle Scout project benefits State Hospital

Andrew Wada of Pingree is running a clothing drive for his Eagle Scout project. He is collecting large, extra-large and double extra-large clothing for residents at the State Hospital South because many of them arrive at the facility with only the clothes on their backs.
Catie Clark

Andrew Wada of Pingree has organized a clothing drive for his Eagle Scout project. He is collecting clothing for residents at the State Hospital South until the end of April.
Collection boxes have been set up at Snake River Library, Blackfoot Library, Kesler's Market in Blackfoot, the commons in Snake River High School, next to the office in the Idaho Science & Technology Charter High School, 11 classrooms at Snake River Junior High School and several area churches. Donations should be new, packaged underwear and socks, and gently-used clothing in sizes large, x-large, and xx-large. Socks should be ankle socks or no-shows.
Wada is 13 and attends eighth grade at Snake River Junior High School. He has lived in Pingree his whole life, where his father Brian is a farmer. He is a member of scout troop 222.
"I helped a scouting friend with his clothing donation project," said Wada, as he explained how he came up with his Eagle Scout project idea. "When his project was done, there was some clothing left over and he gave it to the State Hospital. That's how I learned they had a need."
Wada discovered that when many patients arrive at State Hospital South, their only clothes are what they have on.
"Often, they arrive at the hospital with only the clothing on their backs," Wada said. "When they leave the facility, the hospital sends them home with clothing to use. There's a real need for donated clothing there."
At noon on April 9, Wada showed up with his father in a pick-up at the Idaho Science & Technology Charter High School. The donation box that Wada left off there was one of the last he had to drop off. Along with the box, he handed the Principal Gary Larsen a stack of fliers to distribute to the students.
Each flier has an image of the Boy Scout of American Eagle Scout badge. Next to the badge is a text: "Your spring cleaning can help our community … Bring your items to school and place them in the donation box throughout the month of April. You can make a different!"
The rest of the flier contains instructions on what sort of clothing donation to bring.
"I'll make sure all the students get these," Larsen promised Wada.
Afterward, Wada detailed all the different donation boxes he's built and distributed from Pingree to Blackfoot and points between, including the 11 at his own school.
"I made it a competition," Wada said about Snake River Junior High. "We have these things called WIN classes that compete with each other. I set up a contest where different clothing items are worth different amounts of points. The WIN class that donates to get the most points at the end of the month will win a party."
"The party is getting paid for through donations and the money I earn for doing chores," Wada explained.
"My project should be done by the first week in May since I need to count up clothes, assign points, organize a party and deliver the donations to the hospital."
He added: "Many people are spring cleaning and so now is a good time to donate to a great cause."