Annual collection of hygiene kits

A volunteer sorts donated items for the annual drive to collect and deliver personal hygiene kits to Monarch School in downtown San Diego. (courtesy photo)

Annual collection of hygiene kits

Once again, Victoria Muschek and her family are spearheading an annual holiday effort in Scripps Ranch as they begin collecting and packaging hygiene items for homeless youth in San Diego.

Toothpaste, hotel-size toiletries, soap and toothbrushes are most welcome for donation. The family then sorts and packages the items – with the help of a few volunteers – and delivers them to the Monarch School for their students who are then able to shower and groom themselves each day.

“The donations and support of this program is what I love about Scripps Ranch. My friends and neighbors believe in taking care of the community around you,” Muschek said. “As President Kennedy said, ‘To those whom much is given, much is expected.’ We have a great responsibility to put out a hand and help somebody else up. I hope in some way this program does that for the San Diego homeless community.”

Last year, the project went from 500 kits in 2017 to 800 kits. This year those involved are trying to surpass 1,000 kits. That will supply enough kits for Monarch School students for 12 months.

The Muschek family began this tradition after Thanksgiving eight years ago when they started collecting products such as toothbrushes, shampoo and Band-Aids to put together “hygiene kits.” The family began handing out the bags to homeless people on the street, but decided to partner with San Diego’s nonprofit Monarch School, which is dedicated to helping homeless students.

“Your support helps transform the lives of homeless youth every day here at Monarch,” said Erin Spiewak, chief executive officer of Monarch School. “Your contribution empowers homeless students to succeed in school and life.”

Donations this year will be accepted through Dec. 18. Chile Peppers restaurant, 10299 Scripps Trail, will again be the collection point for dropping off the donated items.

To learn more about Monarch School, visit For questions regarding donations or to coordinate a pickup of items, contact Victoria Muschek at

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