Forester Day of Service 2015
Lake Forest College
April 11, 2015
Saturday, April 11, 2015 marked the fourth annual, Forrester Day of Service; a staple tradition in the longstanding partnership between North Chicago Community Partners (NCCP) and Lake Forest College (LFC). Each year, The Gates Center for Leadership and Personal Growth at LFC mobilizes as many students as possible, in one collective day of service to their community. Because of their growing knowledge of and involvement in the schools of North Chicago, through NCCP, North Chicago Community Unit School District 187 (CUSD 187) has been deemed, annually, the lucky recipient of these amazing volunteers and their passion for service.
Following LFC’s participation in the Enough is Enough Campaign, a national program with the mission of “encouraging and supporting campuses and communities to work together in developing comprehensive, intentional, and systematic violence prevention initiatives,” this year’s overarching message was One Individual, One School, One Community. Through a variety of purposeful activities and discussions, created and facilitated by NCCP, over 230 LFC volunteers and around 380 students from CUSD 187 were partnered together as buddies for the day and engaged with one another around the themes of community, diversity and anti-violence, focusing on how each individual is unique, but equally responsible for playing their part in promoting peace, kindness, respect and responsibility.
As described below, students at each of the grade level centers, and Neal Math and Science Academy, experienced a slightly different, age appropriate spin on the larger theme through different activities.
Grades K-2, Forrestal and North Elementary: Buddies interacted together to identify the characteristics of a strong community and the important role everyone plays in making it thrive. Examples of activities included: choosing a helper in their community and writing a thank you note to be mailed, sorting garbage from recyclables to help our community’s garbage collectors and making stop light cookies to learn about the important role of traffic cops. They concluded their time by reading a poem about using their hands to help and discussing ways in which each student can support their school and the larger community.
Grades 3-5, A.J. Katzenmaier and Yeager Elementary: By analyzing and dropping eggs, running around and finding similarities with others in the room and emptying and trying to refill a tube of toothpaste, buddies took a hands-on approach in celebrating uniqueness, diversity and the importance of harnessing differences for good.
Neal Math and Science Academy, Grades 6-8: In addition to participating in similar activities to those enjoyed by buddies in the 3-5 grade level centers, buddies at Neal Math and Science watched a video on Sharing and Caring, and discussed the importance of the concept, “Pay it forward.”
All participants ended the day with an activity, wherein volunteers and buddies created personal hand prints, using a variety of artistic mediums, to place on canvases to be hung around the CUSD 187 community. The canvases were decorated with a quote, words and images that echoed the identified themes of the day: community, diversity and anti-violence.
In addition to our partners from LFC, a thank you is in order for principals and teachers who came out to show their support, for district custodial staff and their help with set-up and breakdown of the spaces and for Dr. Martindale, Chief Education Officer of CUSD 187, for making the rounds throughout the morning. NCCP and CUSD 187 continue to be grateful for the incredible opportunities that come from our partnership with Lake Forest College and for the wonderful role models the LFC volunteers continue to be for our students. We are already looking forward to Forester Day, 2016!