Making Self-Care a Priority for Vulnerable Teens: REBOOT
Help me give my students access to personal hygiene items so they can focus on learning.
This project expired on March 5, 2020.
Hooray! This project is fully funded
My school serves students from an urban area of our city. 36% of our students come from low-income areas and nearly half of our students receive free and reduced-price lunch. Our school has a large minority population and we house one of our county's programs for English Language Learners, with many students from Mexico, Japan, and the Democratic Republic of Congo. We also have an active LGBTQ population who organize a Gay-Straight Alliance and collaborate with GLSEN.
Additionally, we house magnet programs for Creative and Performing Arts and Engineering.
Thus, our student body is very diverse. Out of the 6 public high schools in our county, our school has a reputation for having a friendly student body and teachers who embrace diversity.
At the beginning of the summer, I was fortunate enough to have my first DonorsChoose.org project, "Removing Barriers to Academic Success" fully funded. As a result, I was able to provide my students with school supplies and hygiene products so that their families wouldn't have to bear the financial burden that comes with the start of the school year.
Now that we are four months into the school year, my supplies of hygiene products are running low and I want to be able to continue meeting these basic needs of my students.
I have observed a direct correlation between providing for students' basic needs and seeing students achieve academically at higher levels. My students and I have an excellent rapport and I attribute much of that to the success of my first DonorsChoose project. My students feel valued when they know I care for them as people, and not just as students. They see me not only as a teacher but as a caretaker.
Every day, I give out deodorant, tampons, pads, and bandaids to students. My deodorant was the first supply to run out. Image is so important in the delicate social framework of a high school. Students know that if they forget or don't have any deodorant, I've got them covered. Feminine hygiene products are expensive and some girls are too shy to ask for them. I keep them on my desk and girls know that they can take whatever they need. Having them on my desk has broken down some of the stigma and embarrassment that girls feel over having their periods.
I am proud of this project and I hope that with your help I will be able to continue to provide for my students' basic needs.
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