When local teacher Anne Vallerga was a high school student in India, residents of a nearby slum would visit the school each week to use the running water, receive hygiene supplies, and play with crafts and games. It was the first time in her life, Vallerga said, that she appreciated the “luxury” of having reliable access to food, water and shelter.
This June, Valelrga, a teacher at New Technology High School, will help lead a group of 17 students on a service learning trip to an impoverished community in Nicaragua.
“I think it’s going to be an intense, emotional experience,” Vallerga said.
The group from New Tech has partnered with Outreach 360, a volunteer-based organization that works in disadvantaged communities throughout the world.
Accompanied by three teachers (including Vallerga), two parents and district Superintendent Patrick Sweeny, the students will spend the trip volunteering in a school that serves disadvantaged and orphaned children. The school in Nicaragua is located in an impoverished, coffee-growing community in the mountains.
Each student has to pay $1,300 to $1,400. Students are doing fundraising through the Outreach 360 site and will have booths set up at a couple of upcoming community events.