Katherine Niemeier collected new or gently used Halloween costumes for students in Whitley County for her Rogers Scholars community service project.

2018 Rogers Scholar Katherine Niemeier of Whitley County loves Halloween.

As a child, Niemeier enjoyed trick-or-treating with her friends and wanted to share the experience with children who couldn’t afford Halloween costumes.

That’s when she decided to organize “Take the Cost out of Costume” campaign, a Rogers Scholars community service project, to collect new or gently used Halloween costumes for children in need in Whitley County.

“As I look back, I have so many wonderful memories of dressing up and going trick-or-treating with my friends,” Niemeier, a junior at Corbin High School, said. “This project is very near and dear to my heart, because Halloween is one of my favorite holidays of the year. I love being able to give kids memories much like the ones I had growing up.”

Niemeier launched a social media campaign to generate public awareness about the project and invited the community to get involved in the effort.

“I reached out to local businesses, like schools and doctor’s offices, to place boxes to collect donated Halloween costumes,” Niemeier said. “There were a total of five boxes placed in my community. Costumes were even collected at businesses where I didn’t have boxes, such as our local hospital.”

Through the community’s generosity, Niemeier donated Halloween costumes (with an estimated value of $2,250) to more than 130 students in Whitley County.

“The costume drive was a huge blessing to the Corbin primary students,” said Jalisa Gay of Corbin Elementary School. “I gave away over 20 costumes to students who otherwise would not have had a Halloween costume. I am hoping to be as blessed next year!”

Niemeier partnered with Corbin High School, Corbin Elementary School, Corbin Pediatrics, The Corbin Center, St. Williams Catholic Church, and others to make the “Take the Cost out of the Costume” project a success.

“The support from my community through the generous donations has made this project a huge success,” she said. “I look forward to continuing the drive in years to come!”

Niemeier is the daughter of Cliff and Tamara Niemeier.