Sunday, May 22, 2011
In its three-year relationship with Pride Academy, the Cotchery Foundation has financially supported our athletic program and created and implemented a mentoring program for our 7th and 8th grade students. This year’s endeavor is the Jerricho's Junior Leaders Program, a community service leadership program that continues the goals of the RESH 180 mentoring program that the students participated in as 7th graders. Through the Jerricho's Junior Leaders Program, students explore how serving others not only helps to create a better world, but also helps to develop them as leaders.
Over the course of the year, in addition to their work on outfitting and preparing the Pride Power Fitness Room at the East Orange Recreation Center, our 8th graders participated in a service project with the Adopt One Village Organization. Adopt One Village is a non-profit organization that collects, packages, and delivers clothing, medical supplies, and other materials to Ghana, Africa. Our students spent time sorting clothes for men, women, and children, as well as sorting toys and putting pamphlets together for Adopt One Village.
Jourdan Bowers, an 8th grader from the Gandhi Team, said that she had a lot of fun during the service project and that she would like to volunteer more in the future. Jourdan reflected on her experience and added, "I think that if I was a child in Ghana and I received a package from America, I would like to know that the package was put together by young people like me."
Ms Michele Chiles-Hickman, volunteer leader of the service projects and teacher with the Cotchery Foundation’s RESH 180 Program, added: “As the mother of teenagers myself and a volunteer teacher with the RESH 180 program, I know how challenging it can be to “get through” to youth of this age. It is always a pleasure to complete a service project like this one, at the warehouse, and know that not only have the children gotten something out of it – which they express now – but that some of these experiences will really stay with a lot of them into the future. It is nice for me to be able to work on the “Legacy” lesson that we speak about and it is nice for them to be able to start a “legacy” of their own. I really think that they feel that they are touching somebody's life and this is the essence of what we are doing at Pride and what we want to pass along…..like “paying it forward”. Michele Chiles-Hickman ABR, CRS
Posted by Pride Academy at 7:00 PM