Service is an integral part of a Woodlands Academy of the Sacred Heart education. Goal III of all Sacred Heart schools seeks to educate to a social awareness that impels action. With this commitment in mind, Woodlands Academy held the first of its two service days this school year on Nov. 1. Freshmen and juniors from the all-girls college-preparatory day-and-boarding high school in Lake Forest lent a helping hand at area service organizations. At the same time, sophomores and seniors participated in retreats on campus.
Freshmen spent the first part of their day at Woodlands Academy packing 50 boxes with items such as school supplies, craft items and small toys that Samaritan’s Purse will distribute to needy children. This non-denominational evangelical Christian organization provides spiritual and physical aid to hurting people around the world. Since 1970, Samaritan’s Purse has helped meet the needs of victims of war, poverty, natural disasters, disease and famine.
Woodlands’ freshmen then spent the rest of their day at Feed My Starving Children (FMSC) in Libertyville, where they helped package 90 boxes of 36 bags each that will go to Guatemala. FMSC donates meals packaged at Libertyville and its other sites to food partners that feed hungry kids worldwide.
Members of the junior class also headed for Libertyville, where they prepared more than 2,000 packages for Lambs Farm’s non-profit store to be sold at Christmas time. While there, they also learned about how Lambs Farm helps people with developmental disabilities lead productive, happy lives. For example, it empowers them to choose the working and living environments that best suit them, decide how to spend their free time, and learn new skills and hobbies.
I’m so very proud of our freshmen and juniors who did truly awesome work during this year’s first Service Day,” Jessica Curbis, Woodlands Academy’s service coordinator, said. “We do this with the hope that the girls gain a greater understanding of themselves and see the difference they can make in the lives of others.”
When the final Service Day of the 2021-22 school year is held in February, Woodlands sophomores and seniors will lend a helping hand at area service organizations while freshmen and juniors participate in retreat activities.
Woodlands Academy’s service program seeks to raise students’ consciousness about the poor, the marginalized and the disadvantaged while encouraging them to promote social justice and social responsibility. Woodlands students must perform at least 70 hours of community service to graduate. Many of them become passionate about service and far exceed the required minimum hours.