3rd graders in Mary Stern's class made cards for homeless people in San Francisco

This story was written by John McKnight, staff member at The Salvation Army Harbor Light Center in San Francisco.

“Not long ago I received and email from a teacher here in San Francisco inviting me to come speak to her 3rd grade class.

She had read an article in our newsletter The Signal which reflected on The Salvation Army Harbor Light Center’s work with homeless people in San Francisco. She wanted to raise the issue with her students that people on the street were just that: people.

The class at Junipero Serra Elementary School was about 20 students. We all sat on the floor and I asked them what they wanted to be when they grew up. I received a wide range of answers to which I followed up with the question, ‘who wants to grow up to be homeless?’

Needless to say, none of them said that they wanted to. I asked why, and then after a short discussion I led them to my closing thought: ‘No one on the street thought they would end up there; they were just like you at one time, in school and full of dreams.’

The class talked about why they thought people became homeless and how tough it can be to live on the street. I reminded them that every homeless person was someone’s best friend in school once, and asked them how they would feel if their best friend was living on the street.

They responded that they wanted to help so the teacher used this starting block to motivate the class to start a ‘sock drive’ to raise donations of socks to give to The Salvation Army to deliver to homeless people on our outreach nights.

The children made cards for us to deliver as well (see image above for a sample); once the socks arrive we will give the cards out along with the socks. It will make for a very special gift to those in need on the street.

We are grateful to the 3rd grade students of Junipero Serra Elementary of San Francisco and their teacher Mary Stern, for their willingness to open their minds and their hearts to homeless people in San Francisco. It is this spirit of giving and service that can truly make a difference in the lives of others and in the community.”

>>>> <<<< Another school in San Francisco got into the act and made peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for homeless people. Over the course of three days (one hour per day), Kindergarten, 1st grade and 2nd grade students from Alta Vista School put their peanut butter and jelly making skills to the test for the sake of helping others. They made 1,600 sandwiches that were distributed by staff and volunteers of The Salvation Army Harbor Light Center's Homeless Outreach Ministry. Want to help? Visit us online to sign-up!

Featured Music: “Peanut Butter and Jelly” by Kindermusik International (purchase song here: THE SALVATION ARMY DOES NOT OWN THE RIGHTS TO THIS SONG.

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