Thursday, March 24, 2011


It's Wednesday night; we are leaving on Friday for New Orleans. Today we had our last meeting at school, where we talked about what to pack, what to wear, where we're staying, where we're going, and even what we're eating. And then we got yet another form to fill out...for this one we even need witnesses!

I am amazed and thrilled at how our fundraising efforts turned out; as a group of 21 people we set out to raise $2000 to donate to St. Bernard Project -- and with money still trickling in we've raised nearly double that amount ($3,900 and counting) for the organization we'll be spending most of our time helping people get back in their homes. It was hard to "get going" on the fundraising piece, but once things kicked into gear we had students going door-to-door, writing letters, sending emails, calling friends and family, and donating items to our online auction. We also had a very successful Dress Down Day, which gave the entire Gann community a chance to help out. Like many people, I've been watching the news a lot recently, following what's happening in the aftermath of the tsunami and earthquake in Japan. So many people from around the world are sending money and other forms of support to Japan right now -- and I can't stop thinking about New Orleans. I feel like a lot of people have "moved on" from Hurricane Katrina, while residents of the City of New Orleans certainly have not. They can not. And while I've participated in a variety of community service projects and fundraising drives to help humankind around the world, I am so glad to be a part of this particular trip that will help my fellow Americans.

Last night, I had a conversation with my friend's 13-year-old daughter. I told her that I didn't know if I had a lot of ability to help build a house. She said, "Well, don't you know how to use a hammer?!" I laughed and realized that she had (excuse the pun) hit the nail on the head: We are traveling as a group of people with various abilities, strengths, and talents -- but together we'll use the tools we have to help repair one little corner of the world. NOLA, here we come!

Ms. Geller

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