Over the March Break, two groups of grade 11 students from The York School went on life-changing, life-affirming International Service Trips.
Over the March Break, two groups of grade 11 students from The York School went on life-changing, life-affirming International Service Trips. One group of students took part in our first ever Kenya Trip run-through with ME to WE in the Maasai Mara, Kenya. The other group travelled to the Global Pathways School in Tamil Nadu, India where The York School has been involved since the school’s founding in 2005 (the India Trip cohort arrives back tomorrow!). Pictures and excerpts from the India Trip can be read in theirblog.
The WE Kenya Trip
The Kenya trip this year was a new experience for both The York School and ME To WE who helped organize the itinerary based on their International Development model,We Villages, focusing on the pillars: Water, Health, Education, Food Security, and Economic Opportunity. Our students had the opportunity to work with the local community through a variety of activities to both support and learn from that community. Students collected and carried water, helped lay a foundation for a new school classroom, taught in grade 2 to grade 8 classrooms, and visited health centres and community farms to learn about sustainable development. They also learned how important it is to develop economic opportunity in the community to ensure long term success.
Excerpt from the Kenya Trip diary: “The past few days have been active ones with us participating at the build site at the nearby primary school on a daily basis. This has included breaking ground, digging the foundations and mixing the cement that the new school block will be built on. We also got a first hand experience of the journey many families make to get water. During the water walk we took turns carrying 20L jerry cans (the traditional way) from a local water source to a mamas house.”
Glen Blair, our Middle School Counsellor and Senior School Advisor, was the lead teacher on the Kenya Trip this year. He shared the following reflections about the experience:
“We go because we know we are lucky. We turn a tap, and clean water flows. For us, a school education is a given right. We go to connect with a community and offer a hand up instead of a hand out to help lift them out of poverty and provide education for their children. We know that what we have as York School students is not the reality of many children around the world. But we are confident it can be, and are hopeful it will be.”
The students will share their reflections from the Kenya Trip and India Trip at the Middle and Senior School Service Assembly on Tuesday April 30th and the Junior School Service Assembly on Friday May 3rd. Current Grade 10 students interested in applying to participate next year should watch their inbox for International Service Trip Application Forms being released in mid April.
Canada's first co-educational independent IB World School The York School is a co-educational JK to Grade 12 independent school located in the heart of Toronto. The York School was founded in 1965 and is the first school in Canada accredited to offer the International Baccalaureate (IB) from junior kindergarten (JK) to university entrance. As an IB World School, The York School's motto is Experientia Docet or Experience Teaches.