Article by Kody Tinga

Photo courtesy of Junior Council

For the past week, tiny trees have been sold outside the Kantina during lunch and after school. Why? Well, these trees are part of a truly “Tree-mendous Sale” created by the Junior Council in order to support the grade level’s service project, Project JeepTree. The trees go for 500 when decorated and 425 if not, and will be sold until the 20th of November. Don’t fret if you can’t buy one in time, however, as you can still place an order for one as well as head on over to the PCA Holiday Bazaar on November 24 to get one.

Project JeepTree is the Batch of 2019’s service project which aims to support the batch’s service partner, ChildHope. At ISM, each batch is assigned a service partner that they work with for all four of their years at ISM, helping provide services and create common goals for the batch to work towards as a grade level community. The aim of Project JeepTree? To raise enough money in order to donate a jeepney to ChildHope.

Responding to a question about why this would be important for the organization, Andrea L., President of the Junior Council, says, “We want to donate a jeepney in particular because it provides a means of transportation for the organization and a facility where lessons can be taught as one of ChildHope’s initiatives is a mobile schooling system. A jeepney will not only help connect the ISM community and ChildHope but will also connect the different communities the ChildHope children live in so they all have the opportunity to learn.”

All of the proceeds made from the sale will not only go towards this jeepney, but will also go towards supporting local farms in Cavite. This is because the Project JeepTree trees are actually Araucaria trees, which are grown in Cavite by farmers. Buying these trees will help support their livelihoods. Additionally, great effort is being put into ensuring that all students from the Batch of 2019 help out in this project – every single tree being sold has been wrapped and decorated individually by a student.

While initiatives like Project JeepTree are important to keep in mind when trying to make a difference within the ISM community, it is also important to remember that each batch has a service partner. As described by the Junior Council, service partners are a central focus group with specific wants and needs, offering a great opportunity for getting involved with service projects in or outside of school. Saturday Service trips are also available as a means of doing some sort of volunteering.

The trees being sold are meant to symbolize the giving holiday spirit and the combined efforts of a community for a single cause, but we must make sure that the giving doesn’t stop now. Giving back is always an option, and while may not be raising money to donate a jeepney, you too can make change!

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