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Pine Hills Elementary raises $15K for clean water in Africa

ALBANY, N.Y. (April 20, 2016) -- It took three years of coin drives, bottle deposit drives, bake sales, garage sales and pancake breakfasts – and plenty of synergy – but Pine Hills Elementary School raised enough money to build a fresh-water well for people in rural Tanzania.

 

And at a celebration Wednesday, the school presented a $15,000 check to Jean Dobbs of the African Reflections Foundation to build the solar-powered, deep-water well. Students also shared some of the knowledge they gained about the country of Tanzania, world-wide clean water shortages and water conservation.

 

The well fundraising project began in 2013 as a memorial to Mary Stella Greco, a retired nun who was the victim of a New Year’s Day homicide that year. Greco, aunt of Pine Hills third-grade teacher Deann Lynch, devoted her life to helping less fortunate people and had herself financed construction of a well in Tanzania.

 

Lynch and fellow third-grade teacher Michelle Chiappone started the community service project with their classes. With the support of Principal Vibetta Sanders, the project blossomed into a school-wide learning and leadership experience for students from kindergarten through sixth grade.

 

Pine Hills Elementary is a “Leader in Me” school, meaning that its programs work to develop student leadership skills using “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People” by Steven Covey. On Wednesday, students in all the grades demonstrated how they used synergy, one of the “7 Habits,” in their collective effort to raise money for the well.

 

The mission of the City School District of Albany is to educate and prepare all students for college and career, citizenship and life, in partnership with our diverse community. The district serves more than 9,500 students in 17 elementary, middle and high schools. In addition to neighborhood schools, the district includes several magnet schools and programs, as well as other innovative academic opportunities for students, including four themed academies at Albany High School.

 

         
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