Family Community Service Day Benefits The Children’s Home
On December 5, 150 volunteers from the Berkeley Preparatory School community spent their Saturday morning volunteering at The Children’s Home in Tampa as part of their annual Family Community Service Day. Volunteers of all ages helped to wrap presents, string lights, decorate trees and campus buildings, hang candy canes, and draw holiday pictures and cards to bring some holiday joy to the children who live at The Children’s Home and to the staff who care for them.
Since 1892, The Children’s Home has evolved from a humble orphanage into a major component of the child welfare system by offering programs that support, serve and protect children and their families. Through a unique partnership with the Berkeley Family Community Service Council, The Children’s Home benefitted from Berkeley family volunteers who enthusiastically wanted to make a difference for children during the holiday season.
The Family Community Service Council was formed in 2013 inspired by Berkeley’s mission as a service-driven community to make a positive difference in the world and to encourage students and their families to be service providers together.
In the weeks leading up to the first Family Community Service Day, the family volunteers were encourage to discuss (together) various aspects of giving back and why it’s important. They were asked to discuss questions like “what are some of the challenges facing the world today?” and “how does serving others make you feel?”
“It is amazing to work alongside our Berkeley community members who have such dedication and commitment to serve others,” said Kim Lawless, Director of Community Engagement and the Berkeley Academy. She noted that once the call for volunteers went out to the Berkeley community, all 150 spots were filled in just a few days. “This is who we are as a community, and that response shows how important it is to us to help those in need.”