Altadena Middle School

Students at Altadena Middle School carried jugs of water to raise money for the people of the Sudan, where only one in 10 people can access fresh water.

Seventh graders at Altadeña Middle School last week proved you’re never too young to make a difference in the world.

They held a fundraiser that will help provide clean water for families in Sudan.

Seventh-grade English Language Arts students each carried two gallons of water on a walk around campus, raising money with each lap walked.

In addition to fundraising, students were recreating the experience of a character in the book, “A Long Walk to Water.” The book tells the story of a young Sudanese girl who walks barefoot every day for hours to collect water.

“This was a great opportunity for students to have empathy for others,” said teacher Tara Camarano. “The main character in our novel had to walk miles, daily, for clean water. We wanted the students to get a feel for what that was like while raising money for a good cause.”

This is the second year Altadeña has held the walk, and students raised $2,300 – more than twice the goal of $1,000.

Proceeds will go to the nonprofit organization Water for South Sudan, which helps build wells for Sudanese villages. According to the group, only one out of 10 Sudanese have access to basic sanitation.

The fundraiser was originally scheduled to take place on Altadeña’s track, but recent heavy rain left standing water on the track. Undeterred by the water, students altered plans to ensure the walk could go on as planned.

“It’s just one more way our Altadeña students and staff demonstrate leadership,” said Principal James Martin. “They were confronted with an obstacle and found a solution. Projects like the Walk for Water are great examples of our LEAD principles.”

Altadeña is a LEAD School, with a mission to teach students to lead by example in their communities.

For more information: waterforsouthsudan.org.

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