Students strive to build a school

Leah Mulaly

     Cedar Park High School students are typically avid fund-raisers, whether it’s for a peer in need or people in another country. The latest fund-raiser is A Glimmer of Hope, a foundation that builds schools, sanitary bathrooms and wells to supply clean water and other basic needs for impoverished people in Ethiopia. Leander ISD, led by CPHS, is working with A Glimmer of Hope to raise $50,000 for the cause.  

     The cause was brought to the attention of the Presidents League by Phillip Guebert, senior and President of Timberwolves for Christ, who enlisted the help of Kayla Klein, senior and Student Body President and Alisha Mehta, senior and President of National Honor Society.

     “I was watching a movie called One Peace at a Time that Ms. Iskra told me about, and A Glimmer of Hope was featured in it,” Guebert said. “Just seeing the reactions of the people that the organization was helping really made that charity stand out to me. On top of that, I found out that A Glimmer of Hope is based in Austin. I met with them and I just knew that this was the organization I wanted to help out.”

     The money raised goes towards a school that already exists in Dali, Ethiopia but is not nearly sufficient to provide a quality education for the people. Among the reasons for the school’s inadequacy is the fact that there is an average of 90 children per classroom and the school is falling apart. The money will help the school expand to accommodate the population and make it more comfortable and durable.     

     The first fund-raising event that Guebert organized was a Berry Cool night February 26. Twenty percent of each purchase made that Friday afternoon went towards the $50,000, resulting in about $360 in proceeds.  

     “I was more than happy to donate to the foundation, plus I got frozen yogurt out of it,” Lexi Bryant, junior, said. “It was also good to see a lot of students…supporting the foundation as well.”

     Following Berry Cool Night, Hope Bracelets were made to sell in the cafeteria for one dollar. This handmade fund-raiser was organized by Alex Lee, senior and JETS President; Kathryn Madden, senior and Band President and Mercedes Ordonez, senior and Newspaper Editor-in-Chief. The trio set up times outside of school to make the beaded bracelets with the assistance of other students who wanted to get involved.

      “I was trying to think of really easy ways to fundraise,” Lee said. “It would be a way that we wouldn’t have to spend a lot but we could still get a lot of donations. Students want something cheap and it’s easier than a T-shirt because you don’t have to wash it and they can wear their bracelets every day.”

     Another student-organized fund-raiser was the benefit show hosted by RISE Dance Company March 22 in the PAC. Alisa Guardiola and Caitlin Beckhom, seniors, belong to RISE, as well as several other girls from nearby high schools.

     “We really love doing community outreach stuff and we really love performing so I just pulled everyone together,” Guardiola said.

     The girls performed several dances they’ve used throughout the year for competitions and previous shows to put together an hour-long show. The CPHS Celebrities provided baked goods for the show, which were included in the eight dollar entry fee. One hundred percent of the proceeds went towards A Glimmer of Hope.

     The next major fund-raiser will be a fashion show for Elementary and Middle school girls hosted by NHS April 16 in the CPHS Little Theatre. The high school girls will get to dress up in their old Prom and Homecoming dresses and walk down the red carpet first, essentially modeling for the younger girls. Then they will help the little girls do their hair and makeup and it will be their turn to walk down the red carpet in princess dresses, possibly with a high school escort—a prince, so to speak. 

     “I think it’s a cute idea and it would be fun to do,” Mehta said. “It’s something different, better than a bake sale or car wash.”

     Another fund-raiser is a Silent Auction, which will take place April 24. Each CPHS club is contributing a gift basket to the cause, some of which will involve support from businesses. There will be a variety of baskets, such as a coffee basket, a Crayola basket and an Austin basket, including gift cards to Austin favorites like Amy’s Ice Cream and Whole Foods.

     Also April 24, Newspaper and FFA will join to host their fund-raiser entitled “Hoe-down in the courtyard.” The event will be a country western dance, complete with students teaching others various dances. It will be open to the community, with one dollar admission for children, two dollars for students and three dollars for adults. Everyone will have an opportunity to get their picture taken in their western attire and grilled hotdogs and hamburgers will be available for purchase. In addition, many other organizations will set up booths to sell their fund-raising products, such as Hope bracelets.

     Once the money is raised and submitted to A Glimmer of Hope, news updates and pictures of the school can be sent out via email to anyone who signs up for it, allowing everyone to see what they helped create. With the combined effort of the entire student body, the seemingly ambitious goal seems to be within reach. Fundraising suggestions are welcome and should be emailed to [email protected].