Mepham High School’s Freshmen Seminar classes, under the direction of Mrs. Linu Chacko and in conjunction with Ms. Alexandra Dolan, the English Department Intern, worked to gather school supplies and children's toys for the Caroline Wambui Mungai Orphanage in Kenya.
The project was developed by first studying the importance of one's voice. The students interviewed a classmate and then wrote a feature article celebrating an important milestone or achievement in that person's life. The features were compiled into a booklet and shared with the class. After working in the class, Ms. Dolan introduced the students to the orphanage, and the class discussed people in the world who have no voice. The students began to empathize with the children in Kenya and were compelled to help.
Over the course of two weeks, the students generously donated a plethora of items including stickers, coloring books, toothbrushes, bubbles, and art supplies. On April 1, the students were visited by Adelphi University professor, Dr. Anne Mungai, who runs and operates the orphanage, and Dr. Diana Feige, a colleague of Dr. Mungai’s and a frequent visitor to the orphanage. The students and the teachers alike were engrossed in the stories of these children’s lives and truly touched by the smiling faces in Dr. Mungai's photographs.
Dr. Mungai was able to phone the orphanage during the presentation and students were able to hear the voices of the children they have helped so much. Several of the freshmen were selected to present Dr. Mungai with the gifts, as well as the hand written "pen-pal" letters the students wrote to the children in Kenya. At the end of this altruistic experience, students and teachers realized the magnanimous impact individuals can have on those less fortunate.