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Bronxville News

Week of Service Encourages Students to Give Back to Community
Bronxville, NY

Bronxville High School students brought together the entire school community for weeklong service opportunities. From fundraisers to meditation sessions, river cleanup efforts, cooking meals for people in need and connecting with war refugees, the students supported a variety of projects.

“We designed Week of Service to encourage students to recognize opportunities to become engaged with their community in a meaningful way and highlight service opportunities within our school and wider Westchester community,” said senior Sydney Tuck, who coordinated the project with teacher Alyssa Dioguardi. “We were inspired by the active work the student body was already doing and thought this was a great opportunity for all students to get involved and bring the work into the spotlight.”

As a culmination to their Week of Service, juniors and seniors welcomed President and CEO at Goodwill Industries of Greater New York and Northern New Jersey Katy Gaul-Stigge as a keynote speaker on April 1. She discussed her career journey that led her to Goodwill and shared how she’s been able to support people of all abilities in jobs, as well as bring in an old thrift store model into the changing sustainable retail landscape. 

“Katy Gaul-Stigge discussed her role as the CEO for a charitable organization, as well as the spirit of service that allows Goodwill to continue their work and impact,” Tuck said. “It was enlightening to see the path that she took to her position at Goodwill.”

She also shared real-life stories of people who have been impacted by the organization and commended the students for their contributions to their local community. Following her address, she met with a smaller group of students for a Q&A session. Peter Coquillette, a senior and Student Faculty Legislature president, organized Gaul-Stigge’s visit, along with a weeklong clothing drive for Goodwill.

In addition, the students held drives throughout the week to collect books and infant clothing, as well as prom and graduation attire. They raised money to benefit organizations providing on-the-ground support in Ukraine, connected with a Ukrainian refugee and cooked meals for a local soup kitchen. They also planted pollinator pathways to support natural pollination of local plant species and participated in Bronx River cleanup efforts. They also hosted a guided meditation and engaged elementary school students in chalk drawings on the blacktop.