On an early morning in April at Plymouth Scholars Charter Academy, one would have found a truck filled of supplies and hearts overflowing of compassion as staff did their part to support Beaumont Hospital in Dearborn, MI.
At the beginning of the year, teachers ask parents for optional donations of wipes, paper towel, hand sanitizer, etc., and with the school experiencing an unexpected closure due to COVID-19, there were a lot of materials left over.
“Since we are no longer in school, we thought as a school community it would be wonderful to give these donations to a hospital that needs it now,” said Sabrina Terenzi, principal at Plymouth Scholars. Included in the donations was hand sanitizer, paper towels, and disinfecting wipes, all items that are essential and hard to come by during these unprecedented times.
“At Plymouth Scholars, we are focused on Core Values and our Moral Focus virtues,” shared Terenzi, “They are embedded into our instruction, daily interactions with students, families, and staff, and is intentionally taught. Helping our community demonstrates these values and shows compassion for our first responders.”
Terenzi shared that her school community is happy to help the medical workers in any way they can. The employees and staff at Beaumont Hospital expressed gratitude and even shed tears of joy.
This is not the first act of generosity Plymouth Scholars has shown throughout the COVID-19 pandemic; Plymouth Scholars also recently donated 100 bottles of hand sanitizer to Harper Hospital in Detroit. “Hospitals are low on supplies and those supplies are essential for the medical workers' health. Since we have these supplies, it felt right to donate them.”
Cathy Henkenberns, director of school quality at NHA, loves to see school communities come together to support the needs of the local community at large. “It is essential that we care for each other in our school and even more importantly, that we are productive members of our community,” she shared. “Sharing resources that are critical to the well-being and health of all people is a quality example of our Moral Focus virtues in action. It’s not just what we say but what we do that conveys our true values.”
What makes Plymouth Scholars who they are as a school community is deeply rooted in giving back. In June of 2019, a Plymouth Scholar student raised over $9,000 for the American Cancer Society’s ResearcHERS Foundation in her father’s memory. The giving didn’t stop there! In May of 2019, students and staff at Plymouth Scholars held a fundraiser in which they collected and donated 450 items, including crayons, colored pencils, markers, and coloring books, to the University of Michigan Mott Children’s Hospital. More recently, at the beginning of this year, Plymouth Scholars partnered with Gleaners Community Food Bank and collected and donated 1,339 pounds of food to feed their local community.
Terenzi beams with pride and shared that relationship with families and staff has even been strengthened through giving back because their stakeholders know they are doing what is right. Her staff was eager to give back and help these hospitals, and parents loved seeing that their supplies were helping the community.
“The outpouring of appreciation and love that we have received due to this small act demonstrates what is important right now in the world - compassion and assisting others,” said Terenzi. “We are all in this together!”