Summer: A Season to Serve

Written by: Gabrielle

Edited by: Ines

Visual by: Ethan

As the final classes of the school year arrive at a virtual end, ISM students sprint away from Zoom into new action. For most students, summer is a time for relaxation, adventure, discovery and personal enrichment. Without the grueling thought of school on their minds, the free time opens up an extra opportunity to embark on activities that serve and help others. 

Rafa, an incoming junior, plans to host free online basketball workshops where he teaches drills and leadership skills to underprivileged children. His program, BC Basketball, provides the children with both basketballs and snacks, with its central goal being to empower them with values and skills so they can progress beyond their current situation. 

Riishi, another incoming junior, will continue to do his year-round food service for security personnel and staff in his village. Together with his family, he cooks, packages, and distributes meals for them. 

Ryan, an incoming senior, will be volunteering at an orphanage to help kids improve their math skills. 

An integral part of an ISM education is fostering a spirit for service. When the destructive and violent Typhoon Odette hit the Philippines in December of last year, it left Siargao, home to 180,000 people, in a catastrophic state. According to the provincial government, over 90% of the buildings on the island were severely damaged. Now, over 5 months later, approximately 12,165 families out of the 14,155 in Siargao that were affected still remain in evacuation centers. In response to this, Lokal Lab, a Siargao-based NGO, is in the process of raising funds to help reverse the 20 billion pesos worth of damage caused by the typhoon. A project they have taken on is building community spaces such as waiting sheds, where vendors sell and fishermen come to rest. On behalf of Ms. Hartley, Bamboo Telegraph has donated P100,000 to Lokal Lab, to aid them in accomplishing their ultimate goal, which is to empower the local community, creating a self-sufficient and sustainable island. 

Images of waiting sheds being built

There are many different ways in which students can take part in service work, whether through volunteer work, sharing skills, or fundraising. Engaging in meaningful service learning experiences is a fundamental part of an ISM education, and manifests in the compassionate and inclusive environment of the school. Performing acts of service creates a sense of purpose, and demonstrates a positive impact to the world. As the school year comes to an end, BT encourages fellow students to help individuals or communities, and have a fulfilling summer through service.