Golden Apple: A Week Of Caring at Heartland Christian Academy
It started with just a conversation from a group of people that were eager to be more service oriented and shed the light of Christianity in the community. That conversation sparked a week of caring where all students at Heartland Christian Academy in Bemidji got involved.
“Yesterday, we went to the Boys and Girls Club which was really fun because the kids went out and cleaned all around the building and they swept and mopped and vacuumed and cleaned windows, and it was really neat because a lot of the kids hadn’t seen the Boys and Girls Club and they got to see the good that it does and helping out the other kids,” said Jon Ness, Heartland Christian Academy Principal. “And today now we’re at Churches United, and this has been a really neat one because it’s helping out the homeless people in our community and our kids are really learning a lot about that, there’s a lot of need for service and we set ourselves apart that way. We set ourselves apart far as we expect that the kids help each other out, and it’s kind of amazing because our kids just do it naturally.”
Students from pre-K up to eighth grade completed several community projects during the week such as helping the food shelf pack snack bags, cleaning the Boys and Girls Club, and stuffing backpacks.
“They see a couple like here, ‘you mean we’re packing lunches for people and there’s people that really need that’ – we’re the backpack buddies when we’re filling those, you know, there’s kids that have to bring food home, and it’s really neat to see how their mind is growing and how they’re getting so many positive things. The places we go to, I can’t believe how responsible these kids are, I can’t believe how nice these kids are, I can’t believe how hard they work,” said Ness. “They said, ‘here, go vacuum,’ and they just took the vacuum and went. They were supposed to do one room and they did like five, so it’s been across the board a huge thing. It’d be something nice we could do everyday, but we do have to spend some time in class.’
Parents and teachers of the students have also helped with the school’s Week of Caring, whether it’s transporting the students to and from different locations as well as volunteering for an hour or just ten minutes. Seventh and eighth grade students that helped with today’s project learned that there are a lot of people in the community who not only need help, but also need love.
“I have learned to be a little bit more selfless and more caring and I have learned that there are people out their struggling and that they may need help and that I can be there and help them, and that’s just really cool for me,” said Magdalena, student at Heartland Christian Academy.
Students at Heartland are enrolled in a strong Christian-based curriculum and a rigorous educational learning system, and the one thing that sets this school apart is that the students are serving their community and taking their faith seriously.