Our Students: Our students are bringing hope to families in need one house at a time! For the past 4 years, 30 staff members and high school students have gone to Mexico or more recently the San Carlos Indian reservation to build a home for a family in need. We camp in tents, work long days and change lives
Our school is a innovative charter school that defies the norms of most schools in the area. We are located on the border of a rural farming community and a fast growing suburb. Both areas were hit hard by the mortgage bust in Arizona and our Title 1 school is at 87% for Free and Reduced Lunch. Our community unusually mirrors a national diversity demographic in both student and staff. We have a family type atmosphere but do not use that as an excuse for high academic expectations. It is expected that our kids give back to their communities locally and globally. We are involved in service learning projects in our neighborhood as well as in the San Carlos Indian reservation. We also support efforts to build schools in Uganda. The students participating write an essay explaining what they can contribute to the trip and what impact they can have on their community. Participants come back with increased appreciation of their own lives and a desire to serve others less fortunate.
The Project: The service learning trip is costly and we are DEPENDENT on partnerships and donations to sustain it year to year. Because we camp and work in rugged terrain, the need for quality first aid equipment is imperative. Safety is the first concern of parents of participants and we feel that provision of these supplies will put all minds at ease. In addition, we participate in cross curricular activities that tie in to global awareness and need. This year we are focusing on water quality. Students will research the state of water both locally and globally prior to the trip. They will generate hypothesis on the quality of water on the reservation and the contributing factors to its state. Students will have the ability to test their hypotheses with the water kits provided for them by donations. Students will follow up with lab reports and a persuasive essay on what steps should be done to ensure quality water worldwide.
This project is transformational to both students and the families they will serve. In addition, many of our students have not been beyond a 10 mile radius of their homes. The experience of traveling and camping in a completely different terrain expands their thinking and lets them know there is more to our world than their city block.