NORTH AUGUSTA, SC (WJBF)- Paul Knox Middle School is bringing back a tradition that students there don’t even know about.

Before the pandemic, 8th graders would compete against the faculty in a game. The last time it happened was in 2019.

This year, instead of just a fun kickball game, they are raising money for UNICEF to benefit the children of Ukraine.

Students in the Media Arts class at Paul Knox are organizing the event.

The idea came from student, Ethan McKenzie, who thought the game would be fun. He said the idea to make it a fundraiser came from seeing the kids from the war torn country on TV.

“We came up with the idea just as the Ukrainian conflict got big. So, we thought it would be good to help kids our age going through a war,” explained McKenzie. “I think they’re being separated from their parents, being scared, not knowing what to do. And I think we should just help them in any way we can.”

His teacher, Brandi Thomas, told NewsChannel 6’s Kim Vickers that the Ukrainian children have been on the minds of her students and they wanted to do something to help.

“I think we have all just been so overwhelmed with the struggles that these kids have been going though. They’re losing their homes, they’re losing their schools. We say a couple of weeks ago, students having class in a bomb shelter,” said Thomas.

Thomas said she is incredibly proud of her students for their hard work. She is especially proud of McKenzie for his dedication and his big heart in wanting to help kids in Ukraine.

The game will take place during school hours on Thursday and is not open to the public.

Anyone wishing to make a donation can drop it off in the front office at Paul Knox Middle School.