Keith Klinedinst goes trick or treating, but not for candy. Patrick Young rakes leaves and does other chores, but not for money. They do it for food, for others.
The two elementary school youngsters are among 30,000 students, elementary through high school, participating in the Kids Helping Kids Program this year to raise food donations for the hungry.
More than 200 schools from Cecil County through Central Maryland to Montgomery County are involved in the third year of the program.
Yesterday, some 600 students and 200 parents and teachers met at Loyola College to learn about hunger, nutrition and, as Gov. William Donald Schaefer told them, caring.
"You have to learn about caring for others, not just yourself," the governor said. "This is the time in your life to start caring."
This Halloween, when Keith trick or treats in the Academy Heights section of Catonsville, he will dress as the Grim Reaper, a reminder of how hunger can kill.
"I want to see that everyone has food because no one should go hungry," said the 10-year-old fifth-grader at Westowne Elementary School.
This is the third year Westowne Elementary has held its Trick or Treat for Food drive. The school has gathered 1,500 pounds of food this year for Catonsville Emergency Food Ministries, said Jane Klinedinst, Keith's mother and Westowne PTA president.
At Woodbridge Elementary in Baltimore County's Westview section, children hold a Good Deeds Day food drive. Students do chores for relatives or neighbors in return for food donations they take to school.
"I raked leaves for my mom and helped Dad clean out the basement," said 10-year-old Patrick, a fifth-grader. "We need to help kids get food because kids can't do well in school if they're hungry."
After hearing remarks from Governor Schaefer and state Superintendent of Schools Nancy S. Grasmick, the children, teachers, parents and volunteers made peanut butter sandwiches and stocked food bags. The bags will be distributed to local food and homeless shelters.