Igniting youthful passion
Elementary school teachers and administrators know that their students have energy to burn. Focusing that energy in a positive direction is a challenge they face every school day.
But when youthful passion, imagination and desire to help others are mobilized, the results can amaze.
That’s what happened at School #9 when teacher Robin Hill and program leader Shannon Costanzo partnered on a project to ignite 4th, 5th and 6th graders' enthusiasm and creativity in service of those in need. Mr. Green's Boy's Group and students from the Peace Club and Math Club led the Water for South Sudan fund-raising effort by establishing an in-school bookstore. To date, the student-run enterprise has raised $3000. Along the way, they've also acquired some new skills.
The results are exceeding expectations in ways not measured in dollars. Students learn about business and how they affect people's lives in one of the world’s poorest regions. In the process, these young people are enriching and transforming many lives, including their own.
A Musical Eagle
A different kind of rock star
When you think of today’s musicians, the term “Eagle Scout” doesn’t immediately come to mind. You can make an exception for Peter Fogg, a guitar player whose interests include both making music and making a difference.
Becoming an Eagle Scout is something you earn. In Peter’s case, working toward that goal included doing a community project to gain a needed merit badge.
He chose to put both his leadership skills and love of music together in service of a local charity and another humanitarian cause, Water for South Sudan. In Peter’s view, today’s interdependent world means his project needed to address both hometown and world community needs for change.
Rallying fellow musicians and band mates, Peter organized every aspect of a fund-raising concert that collected food for Foodlink and raised almost $1300 for Water for South Sudan. In addition to using his musical talent, Peter designed the poster and used Facebook and his social network to insure the event came off as first-class.
This Eagle Scout's vision, energy, and talented leadership will no doubt continue to soar in service to others.
A wave of sound, a wave of hope
It was one of those times. Everything seemed to just fall into place when Steve Dushenko and Arthur Fraser teamed up around a single goal; make a difference in the world through music. The two corralled their musician friends and put together a fundraising concert for Water for South Sudan.
The energy they created had them turning away bands who wanted to be on the bill. And the concert venue? The Water Street Music Hall. Perfect.
The waves of sound Steve, Arthur, and their friends made together will ripple across 10,000 miles bringing a wave of hope to people in South Sudan.
Partners in Faith
"It was almost effortless!"
Jack Skvorak and Frances Grillo are members of two different Catholic parishes, one suburban, one city. Brought together by a shared commitment to Water for South Sudan, they teamed up to do something that would expand their faith-communities’ local charitable giving to include a humanitarian cause beyond their immediate area.
With the help of fellow parishoners, they organized a series of fund-raising activities for Water for South Sudan. As Frances says, “It was almost effortless!” Through a number of small, easy-to-do, and imaginative efforts the parish partners in faith raised over $17,000. That kind of partnership demonstrates, as the saying goes, how to “think globally and act locally.”
"It's a great feeling"
Samara Selden is passionate about what she believes in. She believes in Water for South Sudan's mission and that passion propelled her into action. With creativity and determination, Samara broke down the usual barriers of high school cliques to unite her school mates in a common cause. The results of their shared experience are not only helping transform lives in South Sudan, but also in a prosperous American suburb's high school.
It Will Change Your Life
Transforming communities - globally and locally
"It affects everything in your life when you hear the stories about people in Sudan. It changes the way you think about things," says Megan Scott, President of the Holocaust, Genocide, & Human Rights Project at Monroe Community College. "We needed to make a difference."
The Project's mission is exploring history and protecting human rights. Since access to water is a basic human right, the Project has a been a long-time supporter of Water for South Sudan. "Students learn about the Holocaust, genocide, and human rights in class, and they want to bring what they learn into the real world," says Angelique Stevens, MCC Professor and Board member of both the Project and WFSS. "Water for South Sudan is a perfect outlet for them to take action, to work together as global citizens to make a difference."
Recent members are eager to carry on the work. "It's our duty as humans to advocate for each other," says Elissa Rowley, chair of the Walk for Water committee. "There's nothing stopping us from making the world a better place."