Students at Key West’s Horace O’Bryant Middle School have spent the past five months in partnership with their local American Red Cross, learning and serving their community.
Led by teacher Cynthia Foster, the sixth through eighth-graders formed the first middle school Red Cross Club in the Keys.
“Service to others has been a theme throughout Horace O’Bryant this year, so partnering with the Red Cross has been exciting,” said Foster. “The students had many insights into how they can help their families and community respond to disaster and provide assistance when it is most needed.”
Red Cross adult volunteers Jerilyn Grimm, Wendy Wheatley, and Wanda Craig participated as facilitators during the spring semester. They provided expertise to the students on a variety of subjects.
“Eloise Duffy, the Red Cross representative who worked with us, was very kind to provide educational materials, guest speakers, and certificates for the students’ volunteer hours,” added Foster. “They learned to be responsible babysitters, provide first aid, prepare for disasters, and carry out the mission of the Red Cross.”
The 15 students have laid the groundwork for another group of students in the fall.
“Response from the students was overwhelmingly positive; they are eager to continue serving their fellow citizens of Key West as young Red Cross volunteers,” said Foster.
The students who participated in the Red Cross Club are: Isabel Washington, George Withing, Cameron Williams, Anna Swiecicka, Nathan Puller, Samantha Marion, Ashley Grimanelis, Cameron Fletchall, Matheus Serrao, Will Anderson, Isaiah Arrieta, Jarod Barnhart, Alyah Avera, Marcella DelValle and Dale Michaud.