If you want to develop caring and compassionate adults, you need to engage the youngest to the idea of giving back. Community service is just part of who we are and is a crucial part of our culture. IDS students make an impact on the lives of others through their involvement in many local organizations.
Read to Grow
IDS annually organizes the community service project, "Read to Grow." During the fall IDS Book Fair, students collect new or gently-used children's books for "Read to Grow,“ a non-profit organization located in Branford, Connecticut dedicated to promoting family literacy and the joy of reading through a variety of programs. The students work in cross-graded groups to create unique collection boxes and tally and pack up the books at the end of the week. Children can consider buying a book at the book fair to donate to this worthy cause or give one of their gently-used books for each new book they purchase at the fair. The entire community participates, and typically over 2,000 books are donated to this great cause.
Warm the Children
IDS raises money every year for Warm The Children. Students save their allowances, give up ice cream money, do extra chores, and sell snacks in school. The money goes to help needy children get nice, new winter clothing. Quite often it’s the first new coat or pair of boots the child has ever owned.
Warm The Children is a program whose mission is to provide new warm winter clothing for children of needy families. The mission is accomplished with the cooperative efforts of Warm The Children, Inc., local newspapers, social service agencies, schools, volunteer shoppers, and cooperating retailers. Every eighty dollars raised buys winter outerwear. Every penny raised goes directly to buying the clothing.
Empty Bowls Feed the Hungry Project
The Empty Bowls Project is a cross-curricular science and art project for grades three and four. Students plant vegetables in the school garden with which they make pots of soup. In art class, students create ceramic soup bowls for their families to use in a fundraiser dinner. Proceeds from the meal are donated to the Connecticut Food Bank each year.
Spirit Day Service
Throughout the year, the entire IDS community enjoys connecting Spirit Days with Community Service. Collected items are donated to local shelters and various organizations. For "Crazy Hat Day," a wide variety of hair products are brought in. For "Pajama Day," cereal and gently used stuffed toys are collected. Cans of soup are donated for "Soup-er Bowl Day."
Frequently, during the winter months, students run clothing drives to collect coats, hats, mittens, shoes, and boots which students donate to homeless shelters.
IDS middle school students have the opportunity
to join the Interact Club. The club works with Connecticut Rotary International
District 7980 in Middletown.Interact Clubs
provide youth with opportunities to perform community service projects both
locally as well as internationally within a framework of education and
club meets biweekly to plan projects, such as collecting shoes to be distributed locally and globally, as well as holding a basketball tournament to raise money to purchase malaria nets. In addition, the club members run a school store with
profits being used to fund projects.
The club is currently raising funds to help eradicate polio
worldwide. Money made from the
school store and school dances will be sent to buy vaccines for infants in the three countries where polio continues to be endemic, Afghanistan, Nigeria
and Pakistan. Students also attend conferences with other interact clubs to share ideas and attend workshops on ways to improve the club.