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Sat, Aug. 24

Mingus Interact students connect with Jubilee School in Haiti

Mingus Interact Club members Saya Federbush and Andy Davila, along with teachers Kristy Meyers and Chris Furry experienced hands-on service-learning opportunities during their trip to the Jubilee Blanc School in Gonaives, Haiti. Courtesy photo

Mingus Interact Club members Saya Federbush and Andy Davila, along with teachers Kristy Meyers and Chris Furry experienced hands-on service-learning opportunities during their trip to the Jubilee Blanc School in Gonaives, Haiti. Courtesy photo

The MUHS Interact Club, supported by the local Rotary International Club, had the incredible opportunity this spring to visit their partner community in Gonaives, Haiti.

Jubilee Blanc is an impoverished suburb of Gonaives, Haiti. Since 2016, the Mingus Union High School Interact Club has been sponsoring Jubilee School, nestled in this community.

This sponsorship has included sending donations like peanut butter and school supplies, as well as correspondence, via shipments going to the village on behalf of Manzanita Outreach (Kids Against Hunger – Verde Valley).

This year, Kristy Meyers, a school counselor and key volunteer with Manzanita Outreach, was asked by advisor Cindy Bruchman to partner with the club in planning a spring break trip to see the fruits of their labor. Two student leaders of Interact and two school chaperones spent time with the local students, participated in a feeding program, and distributed food and supplies to local orphanages.

Saya Federbush and Andy Davila, both seniors at MUHS, were chaperoned by Kristy Meyers and Chris Furry as they participated in these service-learning experiences. Furry remarked, “There is a massive difference between raising money or goods for a cause, and seeing those things put to use first-hand. This was an incredible experience.”

Another impactful experience was visiting other local ministries, such as 2nd Story Goods, which are partnering with the community in Haiti and empowering Haitians through education and employment to better their lives.

According to Meyers, the school and ministry has been established in Jubilee Blanc for 10 years and currently helps feed and educate 200 students on a daily basis. Now, these four Marauders are able to talk to their peers about what this process looks like. “It is a transformative experience for the students and chaperones alike” said Meyers.

The group, upon their return, has discussed ways to continue partnering with Jubilee School, including fundraising for a doctor in the clinic, sponsoring a child, and bringing awareness about underprivileged communities around the world – and the important lessons we can learn from them.

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