Each year the School collaborates with a different organization or agency in a school-wide community service partnership. Because our efforts ended abruptly last school year, I am happy to announce that the selection committee has approved the continuation of last year’s initiative with Friends of Foster Children (FOFC) for the 2020-2021 year.
The mission of Friends of Foster Children is to enrich the lives of those impacted by foster care. The organization believes that it is never too late for any child to have a happy childhood. Their programming aims to provide enrichment activities for foster children to which they may not otherwise be exposed.
FOFC wants every child to realize that they are courageous, creative, and confident and that they have unlimited potential. It is interesting to see how closely this aligns with what The Benjamin School aspires to instill in its students. It is the hope of FOFC and The Benjamin School that continuing this partnership will positively influence the lives of all of our children and students.
As you know, previous school-wide projects have addressed issues in the areas of hunger, homelessness, health, education, and hurricane relief. These projects have been extremely successful and meaningful thanks to all of you. Concern for others and a commitment to serve society is included in the School’s mission statement and has always been an integral part of Benjamin’s caring culture. Our school-wide community service projects enable us to bring the 12 Benjamin Values to life.
As we begin this year’s annual partnership, I would like to highlight some of the plans for the year that are already being made. These always expand because of the creativity and generous spirit of the Benjamin community. It is our hope that all Benjamin constituents will find a special way to become involved. Included below are some of the many TBS/FOFC partnered initiatives being considered for this year:
- Pumpkins from the middle school advisory decorating contest will be donated to FOFC individual and group homes.
- Grade 3 will donate Halloween costumes collected during their annual costume drive.
- Toys and gifts from the annual Holiday Toy Drive will be given to FOFC to share with their children and teens. Benjamin students will be asked to bring a gift appropriate for someone their own age, if possible.
- Benjamin will conduct a collection of gently used clothing to be given to children and teens and to be donated to the FOFC thrift shop.
- Upper School students will participate in creating gift baskets for the children in foster care to share with their case managers to express their appreciation for all they do.
- WOW students will focus on the school-wide event as part of their Trike-a-Thon.
- TBS will collect carry-on luggage and duffel bags for children in foster care.
- Middle School students will donate backpacks with useful items.
- Grade 2 will donate gently used games and puzzles.
- FOFC will have the opportunity to virtually join the Binary Bucs Coding Initiative.
- Students will collect children’s books to be donated to FOFC.
This is a sampling of activities being planned. I hope something here piques your interest. We encourage all constituent groups to participate as we build upon our culture of kindness, generosity, and empathy. Despite having to eliminate the more hands-on opportunities we have enjoyed in past years, Benjamin continues its commitment to the School’s mission and to positively impacting our community.