501 3c Organization

Raider Community Service Club Travels to Nicaragua

During Spring Break 2017, 21 students from the Community Service Club traveled to Nicaragua. They spent their days, along with teachers and chaperones, interacting and helping students and delivering needed supplies to the area. The group stayed at and worked with El Ayudante, an organization created to assist​ the children and families in and around the city of Leon. Each morning, the Raiders provided snacks and played with students at various primary schools. In the afternoons, they delivered water filters to families that do not have access to clean water and provided food bags with basic items which will last the families for many weeks. Through the course of their stay, they assisted more than 40 families.

The students gained a great perspective of how others live outside of the United States and gained much appreciation for everything they have. Said Shamona Harrell, counselor and trip chaperone, “There is a quote that states, ‘Only by giving are you able to receive more than you already have.’ Based on what our students gave, they are in for a huge return for their hard work. It was such a joy to watch each and every one of them give a little piece of their heart to the kids of Leon.”

 

Laura Taylor, Math Teacher and one of the trip co-organizers, added, “The best part of this experience for me was seeing these students come together, despite their different cultures, religions, and race, to work toward a greater good. The students poured out their hearts every day for the people of Nicaragua and it was a magical thing to see.”

The cost for transportation, housing, and meals were funded through various successful fundraisers including the inaugural “Riverwood Runs for a Reason 5K” and donations from family and friends. The Community Service Club also collected supplies from the Raider community and were able to transport four large suitcases full of school supplies, clothing, and toys to Leon. The Riverwood Foundation funded the costs for the teachers to organize and chaperone the trip.

Martha Ross, one of the students on the trip, remarked “Spending a week in Nicaragua taught me to appreciate what we have and how a little help can go a long way. It was a great experience and I hope that we have the opportunity to serve next year.” The Community Service Club intends to continue helping families in Nicaragua for years to come and is already making plans to return to the same area during Spring Break 2018.

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