In what has become a twice-a-year tradition, the Tabor Academy community will participate in a day of service on Wednesday, April 9. Before heading off to dramatics practice, the rowing tanks, or the turf field, each advisory group will provide service to a local organization. Mathematics teacher Will Becker’s advisory will head to New Bedford to assist the Salvation Army with some much-needed yard work. Will O’Leary’s advisory will travel to Dartmouth and help with the daily chore of cleaning cages and kennels at the Humane Society. French teachers Connie Pierce and Polly Henshaw will walk into Marion Village to complete a project at the Congregational Church. Merry Conway’s advisory will get their hands dirty helping with community garden preparation at the Dartmouth YMCA. The garden there supplies thousands of pounds of fresh produce to New Bedford-area residents each year.
Closer to home, students in bright green bibs will be working on road cleanup, a yearly project done in cooperation with the Marion Tree Committee. This year’s focus will be on the I-195 on-and-off ramps and sections of County Road and Point Road. Following along behind, Eric Hartell and his advisory will throw bags of trash and recyclables into a Tabor pick-up truck and take them away to Marion’s trash and recycling center. On the Tabor waterfront, two advisory groups will be working on the Oyster Farm, an effort to complement and build on the existing marine science program housed in the Tabor Marine and Nautical Science (MANS) Center. Two of the main goals for starting an Oyster Farm on campus were to help support the existing Town of Marion shellfish propagation program and to provide to our marine science students with applicable hands-on fieldwork in a growing industry.
On campus, junior Leandra Warren has organized five advisory groups that will hold age-appropriate classes for first grade scholars from New Bedford’s Alma del Mar Charter School. Alma del Mar’s curriculum, instruction, support services and school culture are designed to address the specific needs of New Bedford children so they can reach their full academic potential and set forth on the path to college. This marks the third year that Alma scholars will visit Tabor. The morning will include classes in Chinese, marine science, physical education, and art. From there, the children will head to the dining hall for lunch before boarding a bus back to school, all the while escorted by students in Julie Salit’s advisory.
Service has become an integral part of the Tabor Academy culture. Over the past three years, the school has established partnerships with a number of organizations to include the Sippican Lands Trust and Our Sisters’ School in New Bedford. As well, Tabor has a long-standing tradition of working with Child and Family Services by participating in their Big Brothers, Big Sisters program.
All in all, Tabor is working with twenty-plus South Coast organizations on the day of service. If your organization is in need of some volunteers at any time throughout the school year, please do not hesitate to contact Lauren Boucher, Tabor’s director of community service, at 508-748-2000 x2215.