Recently, a special education teacher from Temple City High School who is also a member of our Purist community reached out to us seeing if there was anything we could do to help some students with some tools to help them succeed. Without hesitation, we were able to put together some care packages together and had the awesome opportunity to deliver them directly to the school and hand them to the students on campus.
Here are some words from Carina, an awesome Purist member and a teacher at Temple City High.
” My name is Carina Quan, and I am currently a special education teacher at Temple City High School. About 3 weeks ago, I performed an act of kindness and bought a backpack for a student I have gotten to know over the last year. Her backpack was torn, but she never asked for anything. Instead, she just smiled, made a cut on the bag, and made it work. I wanted to buy her a bag because I wanted her to know I cared, and I wanted to make sure she had the tools to succeed.
Upon self-reflection, I started to really think about how there are several students with whom attend my high school, but do not necessarily have the tools they need to succeed. Daily, I have students who need pencils, pens, markers, color pencils, etc. because they don’t have any. I open up my classroom during lunch for students who need to use the computer, or print things out for class. My school is located in a middle class and upper middle class area; however, not all the students living here come from families who can support in that way. Though a lot of people don’t see it, there may be those few individuals who barely have supplies to succeed. This was why I reached out to the Purist group. After an overwhelming amount of support from other members offering to donate, I worked with the school counselors to find students who were in need of tools for school, and who needed a boost in their confidence.
Many of the students had several different challenges in their life. Some students come from battered homes, broken families, have working class or blue collar parents, and/or students who have a disability among all of that. I have gotten the pleasure of knowing most of the students in that room, and know that they are really good kids underneath it all. Some students have learned to build a façade to protect their emotions—why should they care if most of the people in their lives have failed them? I want to break through those walls, with the help of the purist group, to show them that people do care.
At times, we as adults mainly see the needs of students primarily at the elementary level but forget that the need is everywhere, and at every age. In the span of 40 minutes, as a group, we made a difference with about 40 students—students who have or are battling depression, trying to work through family issues, or who are working through tough courses, those trying to deal with being an English learner, or even those who deal with having a cognitive disability. This is truly what purist is all about. Accessing the resources around us to help the community—especially those who are deserving. The goal of this event was to provide hope and to provide opportunity for students who don’t always have it given to them. The smiles on their faces, the conversations I heard in regards to the event after, and the ability to perform well alongside their peers who don’t necessarily have the same challenges was what this event was about. Together, we have leveled the playing field for these students. I truly believe that the purist group is a group of ordinary people doing extraordinary things!”
Here are some photos from our trip to Temple City High School courtesy of Danny of Blue Soul Photo.