On Martin Luther King National Day of Service, Stone Ridge students exemplified how the community works to achieve Goal III of Sacred Heart education--a social awareness which impels to action. Here, we highlight just two examples of caring students in action.
Jillian Perry Given Alpha Phi Alpha Community Services Award
For her dedication to serving others in the community, Stone Ridge junior Jillian Perry '19 was awarded the Alpha Phi Alpha Community Services Award at Monday's Alpha Phi Alpha Martin Luther King Jr. Breakfast.
Jillian is a committed volunteer for numerous non-profit organizations in the Washington DC area, including A Wider Circle, where she helps organize donations and readies them for distribution to county residents in need; Food and Friends, Inc., preparing and delivering meals to people who are homebound or terminally ill; and, the Q?rius Lab at the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History, where she demonstrates and informs young museum visitors.
In her award acceptance speech, Jillian reflected on the importance of service, "On this Martin Luther King Day National Day of Service I am reminded of my Ethics class at Stone Ridge from a few years ago where we read Dr. King's Drum Major sermon where he states, 'Everyone can be great because everyone can serve. You don't have to know Einstein's Theory on Relativity to serve. You need only a heart full of grace, and a soul generated by love.' That's a great lesson for us all."
Jillian is a Board Member on Stone Ridge's Social Action Advisory Board, guiding students and faculty on ways to integrate social action themes into programs and school-wide activities. In addition, she serves as a Social Action Reflection Leader, conducting group discussions on social program achievements and how they can be improved to provide greater impact on the lives of others.
Jillian highlighted the role of others in her life who encourage her volunteer spirit. "I am fortunate enough to have many community servant role models all around me pushing me toward that type of greatness, including my parents, my sister Carmen who volunteers at Washington Animal Rescue League, and my Stone Ridge classmates who through our Social Action program really live Goal III of Sacred Heart education: "A social awareness which impels to action."
SR Students and Staff Volunteer at Coat of Many Colors
Ten Stone Ridge girls spent the day volunteering for Catholic Charities' Coat of Many Colors coat closet. The girls sorted through bags and boxes of coats, organizing them by size; put coats on racks from which clients could shop; assisted incoming clients with their shopping experiences by helping them find coats for themselves and family members; and assisted in checking clients out.
In the weeks prior to the day, SR held a coat donation drive, asking community members to consider the needs of others in this very cold winter by contributing gently used coats. Each winter, Catholic Charities collects and distributes over 1,000 winter coats to people in need of a little extra warmth. Hundreds of these coats are sold (for $2 or for free with a referral) at the Coat Closet.
When asked to reflect on her experience t Coat of Many Colors, Wanyana Njuki '19 stated, "Interacting and being with the clients helps them to be seen and recognized because they are often invisible and ignored by the public."
Kudos to these kind-hearted, hard-working servant leaders--Stone Ridge girls!