Confluence Academy-Walnut Park Teachers, Staff Help Give Family a Fresh Start

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For Immediate Release
Date:   October 26, 2012

Contact:  Nez Savala, director, public relations, (314) 436-2313 ext. 7032, (314) 387-3592 cell

St. Louis – On any Saturday, in any neighborhood, you might see a moving truck. It could be a rented truck, or someone’s pickup truck, filled with furniture, boxes and bags. The people who are moving are starting a new life in a new place.

New beginnings make a difference in people’s lives, and teachers and staff at Confluence Academy-Walnut Park helped make a difference in the life of one of their own families.

Caroline Crocker, school social worker, organized an effort to help a family in need whose children attend Walnut Park. The family had been living in transition and recently settled into more stable housing. Crocker has worked with the family since last school year, providing support for the students and their family, being an advocate for their needs and helping them get support from other organizations.

Crocker knew that the children’s situation was impacting their daily performance at school.

“Although I knew I couldn’t change all of the factors at home, I knew I could help provide for some of the needs,” she said.

“Despite the challenges the children face, they have incredibly huge hearts,” said Crocker. “There is something very special about them. We see the potential they possess.”

“To put it simply, we believe in them. I believe in them. I know they can be successful in life, but I also know they need an education to become successful.”

Crocker said the entire family needed to be helped if the students were going to be more successful in school.

So, when she found out the family had an opportunity to move into a new home, she asked them what they needed.

“The parents are very humble and reluctant to ask for help,” said Crocker.

After learning what they needed most, Crocker sent an email to teachers and staff. At the least, she wanted to provide beds for the children.

“I was overwhelmed with excitement at the number of responses I received so quickly. The project soon grew from providing twin beds to furnishing their new home.”

Donations included bunk beds, a twin bed, bedding, dresser and mirror, lamp, couch, chair, ottoman, kitchen table and chairs and a kitchen bar with stools. The items were collected within a week. Crocker rented a U-Haul, made arrangements to pick up the items from donors, and delivered them to the family.

“The family appeared very excited and they were all very appreciative. The children were so excited to have bunk beds. I showed them a picture of the bunk beds put together. One stated, ‘I love that bed.’ The other stated, ‘I’m going to be so proud to say I have a bed.’ The oldest child thanked me for the bed. The parents were discussing ideas about arranging the furniture and expressed a sense of relief.

“We all discussed the fresh start for the family and our hope that having a fresh start will reduce the stress experienced by everyone. There was definitely a sense of renewed hope for the family,” said Crocker.

 

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PHOTO INFORMATION

IMAG0618.jpg – Teachers and staff at Confluence Academy-Walnut Park donated furniture to a school family to help settle into stable housing. (Photo submitted by Caroline Crocker, school social worker.)

Confluence Charter Schools’ mission is to provide the highest quality public education for our students. Every day, students are engaged and encouraged to excel in reading, math, science, technology, visual and performing arts. Confluence Charter Schools’ vision is to provide a world-class public education to prepare students for success in college, career and life.

 

 

 

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