, Muskogee, OK

May 15, 2013

Students serve homeless

— A group of students at Alice Robertson Middle School are learning more than reading, writing and arithmetic.

They are learning compassion, empathy and how to be a servant leader.

The students are members of the AR Family, Career and Community Leaders of America.

They prepare and serve meals at the Gospel Rescue Mission on Friday nights. The AR teens arrive every Friday at 4:30 p.m. and stay until roughly 6 p.m., donning food service gloves and hairnets, then handing out plates of food to Muskogee’s homeless community.

Fabiela Kemble, the Family Consumer Science teacher and FCCLA sponsor, said the group could be anywhere on a Friday night, but they choose to serve instead.

“This was totally done by the students,” Kemble said. “They looked up the number, called and got it all set up. They started small with just serving, then made dessert, and then they started making the whole meal at school and serving.”

This might be the best part of their story — when the opportunity first became available “we had more kids than people to be served,” Kemble said.

“Every student has enjoyed this. Even students who are suspended will show up here and help out. They feel very passionately about this.”

These students are helping the homeless in our community.

But, they also are helping our community as a whole.

By learning at an early age what it means to help others and to understand others, we believe our community will be better off in the long run.

We applaud the students’ initiative and know the value of their work will be made clear to them in the future.