Students Organize Service Efforts to Give Back in Meaningful Ways

Students have been busy since the beginning of the academic year organizing service efforts that extend outside of our school community.
Literacy Connections, a non-profit organization that trains volunteers to teach children and adults how to read in the Hudson Valley, NY, is one such endeavor.
Students like Jen Hughes ’17 worked closely with faculty member Kathy Havard to bring a more consistent and ongoing Literacy Connections effort to campus.
“I first learned about Literacy Connections during Intersession my IVth form year, and my experience inspired me to continue the efforts beyond that one-week period,” says Hughes ’17.
Hughes ’17 says that it has been exciting to help organize the effort:
“We started with holding fundraising events and book drives, but it has evolved. Today, we have about 16 students volunteering weekly,” she says.

The Millbrook students who volunteer with Literacy Connections bring activities and lesson plans to help students with their reading, writing, and speaking. They have also expanded their efforts to include babysitting so that students who have children and are without care for them can still participate. The momentum at Millbrook in support of Literacy Connections is strong, and it makes us proud to see our students working to make such a significant contribution in helping solve issues of illiteracy at the local level.
Students have also been working to help with global issues. One such issue was helping the flood victims in Haiti. Students participating in photography and the Millbrook Farm community service collaborated on this project. They harvested and sold pumpkins, garlic, salsa, homemade tomato sauce, as well as photographs to raise their monetary donation, raising over $300 in just one day for those in need.

Millbrook students also worked closely with the Health Center and the American Red Cross to coordinate a blood drive.
“It is always rewarding to work with the American Red Cross each year and to see the outpouring of support from our campus and the surrounding communities,” said Michelle Arndt, who works in the Health Center and helps students organize the annual blood drive.
Millbrook collected 40 whole blood units and 8 power red units for a total of 48 units collected. As a result, up to 144 lives will be saved.
Service has been at the center of Millbrook’s mission since the inception of the school in 1931, and while the size, scope, and causes may have varied over time, it is clear that the commitment to service has remained the same.