More in News
Service with no boundaries
RUMFORD- Students attending the little red cabin schoolhouse, The Eddy, a “home-school-away-from-home,” located at Newry Corner, came to town recently to research some volunteer opportunities. They toured the Hope Association and River Valley Healthy Communities Coalition (RVHCC).
“I'm trying to expose my students to opportunities that exist outside of their normal activity,” noted teacher, Deb Webster. “My hope is that they will see something that interests them and they'll be motivated to do more of.”
They were able to view the various programs at Hope Association and see what volunteers do there on a regular basis. Even though they don't meet the required minimum age to volunteer, they have the knowledge of what others throughout the community do.
That particular morning, at RVHCC, the workers were distributing their senior commodity food donations. The students learned about the various projects the coalition works on and witnessed first hand, their efforts to help keep area citizens fed and having access to whole, nutritious foods.
Claire Webster, a 12-year-old student, noted, “I think this is really cool. I usually volunteer at a daycare and really enjoy it. It was nice seeing the people laughing and having a good time at Hope Association and it's good to see people getting help (through RVHCC) who can't afford enough to buy their own food.”
Webster requires that her students take part in Service Fridays; “It's a time to work on their own,” noted Webster. “It allows them to feel more independent and connected to what they're doing.”
Examples of their current service work consists of yard work, working on a farm, working with the after school programs and helping out in a daycare. The students are required to then journal their experiences and give presentations on what they chose for service.
“It's wonderful and exciting to see how may people want to work with my students,” noted Webster. “The children learn so much about themselves and other people through the process. It gives them a real connection, not only to one another, but to others throughout the community.”
Webster home schools fifth through eighth graders throughout the River Valley and Bethel areas at The Eddy and limits her enrollment to eight young people per year. She currently has two openings for the 2012-2013 school year. If you would like more information on the school or if you would like to offer a volunteer opportunity, a field trip or your services to the school, call 824-3625.