Service work is a vital part of our therapeutic community. Of course, helping others and being valued members contributing to the community is incredibly important work. We have also found that in having the girls see themselves as members of a larger group and to think outside themselves provides our students great satisfaction.
The objectives of Community Service at Asheville Academy:
- Give the students an awareness of what they personally could accomplish, that could change someone’s life for the better.
- Teach them how they could help better the community in which we reside.
- Aid those who work to provide protection and care for homeless and abused animals.
Every week there is on campus or off campus community work. We have worked with three local organizations for many years:
Newborns in Need
Before we begin, we provide the girls with important data showing them the importance of their effort:
- In the United States approximately 2000 babies are born into poverty each day.
- Over 540,000 babies are born prematurely each year
- For every 1000 babies born, 6 babies lose their fight for life
One of the simple but important needs is to keep these newborns warm. Through Newborns in Need we create quilts for families in need. Asheville Academy students work at designing and producing quilts for the newborns. They also learn a useful skill which many students find relaxing.
Craggy Mountain Railroad
The Craggy Mountain Railroad is a non-profit organization that works to preserve the last 3 miles of the historic Craggy Mountain Line in Asheville, NC. Its goal is to preserve and open this railroad to the public. Historic railroad equipment has been acquired and is currently being restored to its original condition for display on the line. Students have helped on numerous projects and have seen the Railroad begin to entertain guests, teaching the importance the Railroads to the history of this country.
Students have painted, cleaned and helped in the restoration of old railroad cars. In the process they have learned the history of the line, and have been able to pass this information onto others. This has been a great project because it allows the girls to actually see the progression of their work toward a goal that will give entertainment and education to many in the community.
Animal Haven was started by a dedicated group of people who had a goal to provide protection and refuge to animals that had been left homeless or who had been abused. Animal Haven provides shelter, veterinary care and rehabilitation for life or until someone comes along to adopt them. They take in all animals of many kinds—cats, dogs, sheep, goats and pigs, to name a few.
Our students have been learning about the care of these various animals and provided basic care by feeding and cleaning the areas in which the animals live.