As fall makes its long-awaited appearance on campus, the leaves begin to undergo brilliant changes. The change that is most spectacular, though, is the one that our World-Wide Helpers Club is seeking to create. But this change transcends the season—it’s one that 5th graders hope will be spectacular at any time of the year. The mission of the World-Wide Helpers’ Club, simply put, is this: Help refugees.
Marcia’s 5th grade language arts class is a wonderful microcosm of Green Acres’ culture and mission. Students learn grammar, decoding skills, and essay craftsmanship, but they also delve into issues of human interest through literary analysis, research, and discussion. After reading Refugees and Migrants by Ceri Roberts and Hanane Kai and The Day the War Came by Nicola Davies, some 5th graders became invested not only in learning more about the plight of refugees, but about how they could help those displaced peoples, as well.
These seeds of inspiration, planted in Marcia’s language arts classroom, blossomed into the World-Wide Helpers Club that we see today. After discovering the work that the International Rescue Committee (IRC) does to help refugees, Avi K. ’23 and Addie H. ’23 teamed up to make the World-Wide Helpers Club a place where Green Acres students can contribute to an important issue. It didn’t take long for Connor S. ’23, Ella C. ’23, Georgie G. ’23, and Sophia H. ’23 to become key players in the club, too. Michayla S. ’23, a brand-new member of the 5th grade class, even jumped right into the action by designing the club’s logo. The main mission of the club, say Addie and Connor, is to “give to people who don’t have what we have.” Now that World-Wide Helpers’ Club is fully operational, its members are looking to involve the larger Green Acres community.
The first item on the club’s agenda is a toy drive, which is already underway. By providing toys for children whose whole lives have been uprooted, the club hopes to give them something to call their own and that can bring them joy. While 5th graders spearheaded this initiative, they can’t do it alone—it’s a community effort! World-Wide Helpers Club was most eager for an opportunity to talk about its work so that it could promote the toy drive and encourage families to donate new or gently used items. (Restrictions include war/violent toys and toy guns.) A donation box is available in most buildings on campus, making it effortless for children to contribute on their way into class.
With a December 1 deadline for toy donations, the World-Wide Helpers Club members are eager to garner as much community participation as possible before handing its collection over to IRC, who will distribute the toys among its child refugee population. The club members’ investment in such major world issues is an exemplar of all that we strive to nurture in our students at Green Acres: empathy, intellectual engagement, collaboration, and the ability to identify problems and pursue solutions with passion. It seems only fitting that the rest of us follow their example—and there’s no better way to do that than by bringing in a toy drive donation.
For any questions regarding donation particulars, please contact Marcia.