Gulf Stream School believes in the value of service, both within the school setting and in the greater community. In school, students are encouraged to be Happy Helpers. Upper Schoolers may be found opening car doors and walking younger children to class in the mornings. Other students read to or with younger students and/or help out in After School classes. In addition, each class chooses at least one project and raises money, provides services, or both for that cause. Some examples of those projects are below.
1) Grade Level Projects
PreKindergarten 3 and 4
Each student asks families, friends, neighbors, and parents' business associates to participate in the St. Jude Children's Research Hospital Trike-a-thon by paying a predetermined amount for every lap the child bikes around an area of campus. The mission of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital is to advance cures and means of prevention for pediatric catastrophic diseases through research and treatment.
Children create holiday cards for distribution at a local nursing home and retirement community. (Recipients vary.)
Students visit The Achievement Center in Delray Beach to read to younger children and then donate the books to the Center's library. The Achievement Center programs provide services to children and youth who are at high-risk for academic failure, truancy, or school dropout, or are lacking resources to develop personal skills and healthy lifestyles.
Students write friendly letters to children who are patients with cancer at Joe Di Maggio Children's Hospital in Hollywood, Florida. The students and their parents collect and donate baseball caps for the children. A thank you card from a hospital representative helps the second graders learn about kindness, compassion, and gratitude while working on their writing skills.
Third Graders focus on UNICEF, organizing a Chapel presentation and a Halloween Bake Sale and Raffle. They also collect funds from their families, neighbors, friends, and parents' business associates and trick or treat for UNICEF. The United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund was created to work with others to overcome the obstacles that poverty, violence, disease, and discrimination place in a child’s path.
Fourth and Fifth Grade
After purchasing fresh fruit as well as bread, meat, and cheese, students, teachers, and parents make hundreds of sandwiches which they deliver to The Caring Kitchen, where they are given to children participating in the Milagro and A-Z after school programs. The Caring Kitchen is the hot meal program of C.R.O.S. Ministries in Delray Beach. In 2009, it served a total of 102,240 meals.
Fifth Graders orchestrate the Holiday Toy Drive during which they collect new toys and games for needy children. Under the supervision of Mrs. Bessie Armour, past parent, grandparent, and trustee, the gifts are loaded onto one of our school buses and delivered to Hagen Road Elementary School students, who are the children of migrant workers served by the Caridad Center. The Caridad Center operates free medical and dental clinics that provide vital health services to the uninsured, working poor families of Palm Beach County, Florida.
The Thanksgiving Food Drive is the Sixth Graders' project. In November, they collect non-perishable food that has been donated by their families and take it to the Clough Chapel where it is boxed and delivered to The Caring Kitchen for distribution to local families in need. The Caring Kitchen is the hot meal program of C.R.O.S. Ministries in Delray Beach. In 2009, it served a total of 102,240 meals.
By contributing $5 each, students, faculty, and staff are permitted to dress down on Lee National Denim Day. The money is collected by the Seventh Graders and sent to the Women's Cancer Programs of the Entertainment Industry Foundation. The Entertainment Industry Foundation has distributed hundreds of millions of dollars to support charitable initiatives addressing critical health, education, and social issues.
In addition to Donut Days and dress down days, the Eighth Graders sell food and beverages during home games. These profits are used to defray the cost of class trips and to purchase an end-of-the-year gift to the School.
2) School-wide Partnerships
The Florida Coalition for Preservation sponsors beach clean-ups which to date have resulted in Gulf Stream students collecting more than six hundred pounds of trash (and recycling as much as possible). The Coalition also hosts presentations by Sandsifters, Surfrider Foundation, the Sandoway House, and lifeguards from the Department of Parks and Recreation which educate the children about beach safety and the effects of litter on our beaches and sea life.
Paul's Place After School is a local program serving at-risk, predominantly Haitian-American children from ages six to eighteen. Gulf Stream School is part of the "Neighbors Helping Neighbors" partnership, frequently donating food from bake sales, hot lunches, Grandparents' Day, and class coffees. Paul's Place students are invited several times a year to spend a Saturday afternoon in the School's art room to work with Miss Kass and to enjoy pizza provided by Mr. Zaluski. When School closes for the Holiday Break, its lighted and decorated classroom Christmas trees are given to Paul's Place families. Additional gifts such as gently used computers, clothing, books, and furniture are frequently donated from the School and its families.
3) Auxiliary Projects & Fundraisers
- Book Store
- Book Fair
- Holiday gift cards
- Auction or Golf and Tennis Tournament
- Field Day Raffle and Sale
- Holiday and Spring Concert DVD Sales
- Hot Lunches
Profits from the sale of the Holiday gift cards are given to two designated charities that vary each year. All other proceeds are used to print the School Directories and Calendars, to sustain Auxiliary-sponsored events, and to make a substantial ($100,000 to $200,000) year-end gift to the School for renovations and for Annual Giving.