Community Service

Through our school-wide community service program, Annie Wright students learn that they all have talents and the ability to impact a community and develop the passion to serve. Our program focuses on service learning, with the objective of helping students develop from volunteers into service leaders. Service learning offers the opportunity for students to get involved with their communities in a meaningful way by integrating service projects with classroom learning. Every project is student-centered and based on a set process and framework.

Our Program

INVESTIGATION
 
During this phase our students use critical thinking skills to identify and analyze specific community needs. A great example is when our Upper School service club, Annie’s Angels, went to Mary Bridge Children’s Hospital to learn about Tree House, a housing complex for families who live out of the area and need a place to stay to be close to their hospitalized children. The students investigated what Tree House is doing for the community and what they need for the day-to-day running of their facility, and decided that we could help by donating toiletry products for families’ rooms. Partnering with our House Cup competition program, we made this an all-school effort to collect needed supplies. The students worked together to organize the timeline, create presentations and coordinate with Tree House staff. Annie’s Angels also formed groups of students to serve meals and lead themed actives for the families staying there. Students in the Upper School are also selected to serve on Mary Bridge Children’s Hospital Youth Board each year.
 
 
PREPARATION
 
Once students have been guided through the investigation and research phase, they begin preparing to address the need. During the community service elective, students in Grades 6-8 have been preparing to participate in the backpack project, an effort to address hunger in Pierce County, already underway in Grades 1-5. To prepare, the students had to design and create boxes to collect the food, create a chapel presentation, plan a schedule around other school commitments, and work on ways to educate the general school population on the issue of hunger in our area. The students were, and often are, surprised at the length of this process. In their preparations they became a stronger, more confident team.
 

ACTION
 
Annie Wright has more than 20 community partners and works on a wide range of community issues each year. One partnership that typifies how we combine learning and service is our work with The Boys and Girls Club. Students identify an individual or team talent that can benefit the children at the club. The students then propose a club they will run weekly for two trimesters. They work to promote their club and get students to join. Over the last five years, our students have painted a community mural with the kids and have taught Chinese, Art, Music, Math, Cultural Awareness, Self Defense, Origami, Magic and Creative Writing. They have also tutored many students, addressing individual needs. Through this process the students discover a great deal about themselves and how they can really impact a child’s education.
  
 
REFLECTION & DEMONSTRATION

Students lead and participate in discussions that allow them to assess their accomplishments, to examine the impact of their work and to consider how they could improve their action plan for future projects. Developing reflective thinkers is a crucial part of our service-learning program. Students learn to set measurable and manageable goals and then evaluate and reflect on them. The project culminates with students celebrating their success and educating their peers on what they have learned, as well as presenting their recommendations for future projects.
Our students are more than event volunteers. They help plan, initiate, advocate and educate for each organization. Here are a few examples of our community partners and the ways our students support them:
 
The Children’s Museum of Tacoma
Summer Camp Volunteers
Gingerbread Jamboree Volunteers
Special Event Volunteers
 
Mary Bridge Children’s Hospital
Students Working Wonders Board Members
Hospital Volunteers

Tree House
Program Support
Volunteers

Pierce County Juvenile Court
Community Accountability Board Members

The Boys and Girls Club
Program Volunteers

Autism Speaks
Event Volunteers

The American Cancer Society
Making Strides Against Breast Cancer
Relay for Life

The Dugan Foundation
Pet Food Drive
Official Drop Site

The Food Connection, St Leo’s Food Bank
Backpack Project Partner
Food Drives
Food Bank Volunteers

The Hunger Walk for Pierce County
Event Volunteers

Habitat for Humanity
Campus Chapter
Building Volunteers
Special Event Volunteers

The American Heart Association
Jump Rope for Heart

The American Red Cross
Fundraisers to Support Disaster Relief

Cascade Regional Blood Services
Blood Drive Host Site

United Way of Pierce County
Varsity Letter in Community Service Program
Volunteer Support
Youth Board Members

YWCA
Board Members

Contact

Annie Wright Schools
Main Campus:
827 North Tacoma Avenue
Tacoma, WA 98403
253.272.2216

Downtown Campus:
936 Broadway
Tacoma, WA 98402
253.272.2216

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Founded in Tacoma, Washington, in 1884, Annie Wright Schools serve students from age three through high school. Annie Wright Lower  and Middle Schools offer co-ed programs in Preschool through Grade 8, while separate Upper Schools for girls  and boys offer day and boarding options in Grades 9 through 12. Annie Wright is proud to be an International Baccalaureate World School.