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Walden Weekly

Published most Thursdays during the school year

Walden Weekly - March 16, 2017
Terra Toscano

Good Afternoon Walden Families,

At yesterday morning's assembly, two of our Upper Core students made an important announcement. They have put together a letter to share this announcement with the entire Walden Community, and I thought this Walden Weekly would be the perfect platform to do so:

"Dear Walden Families,

As you may know, for Big Help Day on March 25th, the Upper Core is creating a pantry on campus and hosting a food drive to fill it. We will be donating the food to Friends in Deed, which is an organization that helps the local community in need. We need your help to make this happen.

Please help us by donating to our food drive. The most needed items at Friends in Deed are canned tuna/chicken, beef stew, rice, cereal, cooking oil, flour, and sugar. You can also donate dried beans, pasta, oats, tomato sauce, soup, and single serving foods such as applesauce, raisins, and granola bars.

Thank you to everyone who has already donated to our food drive. We greatly appreciate your support. But PLEASE remember to check the expiration dates on the food that you donate. We were surprised to find that some of the food that's been donated expired years ago, even as far back as 2003! There's also been some unhealthy food that's been donated. Food insecurity is about not having enough food but also about not having enough HEALTHY food. We need donations of non-expired, healthy food.

If you go grocery shopping this weekend, please consider picking up an item or two to donate to our food drive. You can put your donations in the baskets under the Parent Guild board.

Thank you for your support!

Sincerely,
The Upper Core Students"

As I read their words, I think about the importance of the lesson these students and all of us are learning as we engage the idea of what it means to help/serve those "in need."

Walden is a place where we encourage our students to question the status quo so that they can think about how to make/leave the world better than they found it. I'm proud that this includes thinking about life in communities or circumstances that are different than our own.

Here are some additional statistics that the Upper Core is learning about food insecurity in the Greater Los Angeles Area:

Food insecurity: this means both not enough food and also not enough healthy food

  • An estimated 1.4 million people in Los Angeles County live with food insecurity, which means that approximately 16% of those who live here do not know where their next meal is coming from.
  • Hunger impacts 1 in 6 people
  • Los Angeles County has the highest rate of food insecurity in the country. In 2014 that was nearly 1.4 million people.
  • Los Angeles is also home to the largest population of children suffering from food insecurity: nearly one in four Los Angeles children under the age of 18 are at risk for hunger.

While our day of service will only make a small dent in a greater systemic problem, I believe that it is these individual acts of generosity, helpfulness, and charity that lay a foundation for promoting a just society and this is why Walden's Big Help is essential. Big Help Day is when as a community, we come together to do direct work on an issue we are concerned about.

This year, in collaboration with our Parent Guild Big Help Coordinators, Rachel Pinto, Sandy Barajas, and Elaine Cameron, we will gather next Saturday from 8:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. to kick off some intentional yearlong service-learning partnerships with the Pasadena Community.

Each Core will host an activity that positively impacts our greater community. Everyone is welcome to come and participate in any and all activities.

Click here to learn about each Core's partnership.

Volunteers and donations are also needed to make this day a success. Click the links below to donate your time, talent, and treasure.
Snacks
Lower Core work shifts/donations
Middle Core work shifts/donations

I'll close this week with one of my favorite quotes about service and generosity, "Everybody can be great... because anybody can serve. You don't have to have a college degree to serve. You don't have to make your subject and verb agree to serve. You don't have to know about Plato and Aristotle to serve...You only need a heart full of grace. A soul generated by love." ~Martin Luther King Jr. #wearewalden

Have a lovely weekend,

Terra Toscano, Head of School
Walden School
626.792.6166 x 11
Tweet: @lifeatwalden

"Be true to your work, your word, your friend." ~ Henry David Thoreau

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