Area school club promotes kindness

V'ville Chain Links Club inspired to help boy with rare skin disorder

In the weeks leading up to the winter break, most middle school students spend their time wondering what kinds of presents will await them underneath the Christmas tree. However, at Voorheesville Middle School, a group of students have decided that this year they will be on the giving side of the holiday.

Spurred by local media coverage, students of Voorheesville Middle School's Chain Links Club have decided to promote a clothing drive in the month of December for a young boy afflicted with a rare skin disorder.

The boy, Randy Saunders of Greenwich, has a rare skin disorder called ichthyosis, which causes his skin to grow three times faster than normal human skin. . The result, according to Randy's father, Rick Saunders, is dry, constantly flaking skin. His parents have to bathe him sometimes up to three times a day in oil to help his skin retain moisture.

The grease on Randy's skin takes its toll on his wardrobe, making the clothing useless after a few uses. When the students of Voorheesville Middle School called the Saunders' to see what they could do to help, Randy's constant need of new clothing was the first thing to come to mind.

It's awesome, it really is, said Rick Saunders of the clothing drive being held for Randy.

The students of the Chain Links Club said they were particularly inspired by Randy's refusal to allow his rare condition to define his outlook on life.

Speaking of Randy's positive attitude, Rachel Goldberg, an eighth-grader and member of the club, said "It's inspiring for a boy to live like Randy and not be upset, but to be appreciative of life."

Carlee Nussbaum, also in eighth grade, said, "When we saw pictures of him, he was playing with friends, like a normal kid."

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