BFS students kicked off their JEM Read-A-Thon last week with a school-wide assembly and silent read-in. The Read-A-Thon supports Buckingham Friends School’s Joint Environmental Mission program, which was founded in 1991 in collaboration with Soviet (now Russian) and Buckingham Friends School teachers. Since then, the program has grown, and our students and faculty have travelled to a dozen different countries spanning six continents. They have trekked in the Amazon Rainforest, snorkeled the Great Barrier reef, had tea in the warmth of a Russian kitchen, lived with Maasai communities in Kenya and Quechua communities in Ecuador. On our recent India trip, we learned about renewable energy at wind and solar farms, and explored stunning 5th century Hindu cave temples.
As the program has evolved, relationships have remained at the core of what makes JEM distinctive. During these exchanges, students and teachers alike share their unique perspectives and find common ground as they learn what it means to be better global citizens and stewards of our shared Earth.
Sustaining a program like this requires significant financial support, and the all-school read-a-thon is one of the most effective and enjoyable ways to raise program funds. Our goal this year is to raise $6,000, and to achieve 100% student participation!
Donations from our school community go to covering the costs of hosting visitors, supporting scholarships and outreach initiatives, and funding on-campus activities and events related to our yearly JEM theme (this year it’s SOIL!). We encourage all of our students to participate in the Read-a-thon, and we ask families to help their students find and communicate with sponsors, and to complete their reading log and sponsor sheet. This is a great opportunity to turn off the computer and T.V., and set aside time to READ, READ, READ!