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La Quinta High School senior Alyssa Torres leaves her mark on the valley before leaving for college

A local student is leaving her mark on the Coachella Valley before she heads off to college.

News Channel 3’s Caitlin Thropay shares her story.

“It’s just awesome to know that these donation drives are fueling a whole entire valley,” Alyssa Torres told News Channel 3.

For the past year, La Quinta High School senior Alyssa Torres has been coordinating donation drives to give back to her community.

“I love this valley so much," Torres said. "I grew up out here and I know that there’s a need," she said.

This week, she’s kicking off another drive asking for different items to give to local nonprofits.

“We’re collecting toiletries and socks for Well in the Desert Foundation," she said. "We’re also collecting books for United Way, specifically youth books but any books are welcomed. We’re obviously doing canned food for FIND Food Bank and then art supplied for Amelia Earhart and Saul Martinez Elementary School,” she added.

People can drop off these items until May 14 at any participating Desert Sands Unified school.

“I’m working with multiple schools in the Desert Sands Unified School District," she said. "I’m working with John Glenn Middle School and Indio Middle School, along with Shadow Hills High School, Palm Desert High School and my very own La Quinta High School,” she said.

You can also drop off those items on Saturday, May 15 from 8 a.m. to noon at her donation drive at La Quinta High School.

This is Torres' fifth donation drive and it’ll also be her last one before heading off college.

“I’m going to Cal State San Marcos in the fall 2021," she said. "I’m majoring in criminology and criminal justice with a minor in psychology,” she said.

Even though she’s leaving for a while, she continues to have big dreams for the Coachella Valley. She’s already working on starting her own nonprofit here.

“I want this nonprofit to be geared towards students like me who saw that there’s a need and saw that they wanted to help but just don’t know how or they need a bigger voice to help,” she explained.

Torres hopes to have inspired enough students to keep her donation drives going while she’s gone.

“I don’t want me to go and this stop and I know that there’s a lot of kids that have this passion but don’t know how to start," she said. "It took me so long because I just didn’t know where to begin," she added.

Be sure you keep an eye out for Torres. One day she hopes to be the mayor of Coachella and eventually work her way to the House of Representatives.

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Caitlin Thropay

Caitlin Thropay is the Weekend Morning Anchor and Lifestyle Reporter for KESQ News Channel 3, The Desert’s News Leader. Learn more about Caitlin here.

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