What is a veteran, asked Michelle Ragoo, Program Director at the Samuel Field Afterschool Program at P.S. 115, of its Pre-K through 5th grade students.
A hero is someone who fights for freedom and keeps people safe, people who help others and is very brave, said one boy at an assembly on March 15.
The elementary students at the Glen Oaks school in Queens know that our returning heroes deserve the recognition and need support when coming home. They’ve learned about the challenges veterans face and SUS’ programs and services that help meet their needs, from Howard Wheeler, Program Director for SUS’ Homeless Veterans Program, who has visited and spoken with the kids for the past two years. This year, Mr. Wheeler returned to PS 115, but this time to thank the students for the money they raised for SUS.
With the help of AmeriCorps high school volunteers who partner with the afterschool program, students of PS 115 raised $1,000 for SUS through a bake sale and school dance. The donation was presented to Mr. Wheeler and Nicole Robinson, SUS Service Coordinator for Supportive Services for Veteran Families, who thanked the kids on behalf of SUS.
It really touches an old man’s heart. It means so much to us that you all, as young as you are, have the mind to think about someone other than yourself, to think about those who are less fortunate, said Wheeler.