The Upper School recently had an official kickoff chapel for its Campaign of Caring for the holiday season, which will feature an abundance of opportunities for students to share with others.
Mr. Bernie McMahon, who is in charge of leadership development and community engagement in the Upper School, opened the chapel with a reflection from Lao Tzu, the Chinese philosopher who founded Taoism: “The more you give to others, the wealthier you are."
While the school has often used incentives like dress-down days, with students paying $1 to wear jeans to school, to raise money for good causes, this year will mark exploration of a different approach. Students are making an appeal to their peers and faculty to contribute purely as an act of altruism, and the clubs will offer a range of options designed to help students find the causes that pull at their heartstrings.
Three students presented initiatives that are getting underway:
- Kendall Pagach '22 introduced a drive to collect feminine hygiene products and bras. These items are expensive and difficult to purchase for low income women. Pagach said the drive is seeking to serve those in the BIPOC community (Black, Indigenous, People of Color). Instagram for national her.drive.
- Blake Brown '21 spoke about an effort led by the Literacy Fellows of the Batten Leadership Program to collect used children's books. He explained that studies have shown that children in low-income households hear fewer words in their early years and typically have fewer books in their homes than children in middle income homes; those disparities can lead to learning deficits as children enter school. The books will be packed into colorful boxes, which students are invited to decorate.
- Bridget Tan '21 unveiled the expansion of a previously existing effort, which had provided holiday gifts to a migrant family that had worked in farms on the Eastern Shore. This year, students are seeking to expand outreach to essential workers, and several clubs will be involved.
More philanthropic efforts will be launched in the days ahead, but for now, students are invited to dive in and help out with these. Let's go, Bulldogs!