Middle Schoolers Raise Money for Puerto Rico

More than a month after Hurricane Maria struck Puerto Rico, many of the island’s residents are still without even the most basic amenities. For some Willow students, the devastation in Puerto Rico strikes very close to home. “I have family in Puerto Rico,” Diana Wolfe, a 6th grader at Willow, said. Wanting to do something to help, Diana suggested a dress down day fundraiser to her Middle School advisor, Ms. Downey. Ms. Downey and the rest of Diana’s multi-grade advisory group were immediately on board!

More than a month after Hurricane Maria struck Puerto Rico, many of the island’s residents are still without even the most basic amenities. For some Willow students, the devastation in Puerto Rico strikes very close to home. “I have family in Puerto Rico,” Diana Wolfe, a 6th grader at Willow, said. Wanting to do something to help, Diana suggested a dress down day fundraiser to her Middle School advisor, Ms. Downey. Ms. Downey and the rest of Diana’s multi-grade advisory group were immediately on board!

“I’m Puerto Rican, too,” Mia Rivera-Diaz, a 6th grader at Willow, said. “I have family there, so when Ms. Downey asked if I wanted to help, I said, ‘YES!’” Mia’s grandmother even helped make a pitcher to collect the money in with the Puerto Rican flag wrapped around it.

Ms. Downey’s advisory group was able to raise $351 for the Hispanic Federation’s UNIDOS Disaster Relief & Recovery Program in one day! One hundred percent of contributions to the UNIDOS Fund goes to help the immediate and long-term recovery needs of children, families and communities in distress from the devastation caused by Hurricane Maria.

“Most people donated more than a dollar,” Finley Schuurmans, an 8th grader at Willow, said. One donor even gave the advisory group a check for $150, the middle schoolers shared, beaming with excitement and gratitude.

“If I could, I’d want to tell the people of Puerto Rico that we’re thinking about you,” Grace Crimi, a 7th grader at Willow, said. Finley added, “You’re not alone.”

The Downey advisory, which also includes Charlotte Binder, Maile Carifa, Vy Lan Chin, Charlotte Duffy, Bronwyn Rafieyan, and Eliot Richards, said this may not be the last Willow fundraiser for Puerto Rico. They have many more creative ideas about how to raise money, and they are ready to lead the school in service to this community in need. Stay tuned for the next opportunity to donate!