After returning from a life-changing service trip to West Virginia, the Students for 60,000 club held a forum at the Northport Public Library to share their experiences with the community.
Students shared how different parts of the trip affected them. Some students shared how moved they were to learn about the adverse impact the coal industry has had on the communities, while others covered their experiences in assisting low income families in various after school programs, working on low-income homes, and learning about various rehabilitation organizations and drug treatment programs with an emphasis on the opioid epidemic.
Additionally, some students shared how rewarding it was to visit Tug Valley High School and make simply connections with other high school students.
“This trip was extraordinarily powerful not just because of the service we performed, but the knowledge we gained,” said senior Katie Sierra. “And the most striking takeaway I got from the trip was how similar we truly are. We share the same core values, beliefs, and many the same struggles, whether related to poverty, drugs, or the environment.”
Students closed the forum by emphasizing their ongoing collaboration and work towards a student exchange, where Northport High school would invite students from West Virginia to travel to New York to partner together in addressing the opioid epidemic among other issues confronting both our states.
Students for 60,000 began in 1987 as a school club dedicated to assisting the homeless. The name of the club came from the approximate number of 60,000 homeless in New York City in the 1980s. Over the years, the club has turned into a program that organizes fundraisers, raising over hundreds of thousands of dollars, and raising awareness for those in need.
Photo courtesy of the Northport-East Northport Union Free School District