The Norfolk Collegiate School Oak Ambassadors service-based program consists of committed fifth grade students who want to make a positive change in the world around them. In its third year, the program has doubled in size and now consists of 39 fifth grader and parent participants. The group is scheduled to partake in six different Saturday projects during the 2010-2011 school year. Through these philanthropic activities we will not only be giving back to our local community but will also be helping to instill our school values of respect, responsibility and compassion. Lower School Dean Cleteus Smith stated, “Our Oak Ambassadors share the responsibility to provide support for one another and our local community as a whole. Through this responsibility, we will experience a profound positive experience that adds an essential layer to student’s education at Norfolk Collegiate School.”
The first service project was with the ForKids organization. The ambassadors assisted by stocking, packing and organizing gifts in their Holiday Gift Shop December 11. “Not only did it truly put me in the Christmas spirit; I felt it was such a great bonding experience for the parents and children of the entire fifth grade class,” said Amy Suellen Flora, fifth grade parent. The donated toys were distributed to families in need throughout the holiday season.
Additional projects the Oak Ambassadors will tackle include: Norfolk Collegiate Middle School bake sale where profits go towards operation smile on Jan. 25; Norfolk Botanical Gardens Rose Pruning Day (landscaping) on March 5; 2010 Great American Cleanup where students will be cleaning & beautifying Norfolk on April 2; painting playground structures, fences & landscaping at the For Kids 38th Street location on April 16 and Virginia Beach SPCA Landscaping & Washing Dogs on May 7. During these service opportunities, students gain an integral component of character development. Groups like the Oak Ambassadors assist in furthering Norfolk Collegiate School’s goal of educating the whole child.