Friends Donate Time…!
There is a “Friends of Copey” culture and it continues to be represented by the generosity of others who volunteer to support our efforts. In 2019 I was able to capture the enormous array and diversity of non-financial support received to help accomplish all of our 2019 objectives.
This year 2020, the usual volunteers were ready to donate their time and poised to repeat their outstanding 2019 performance. Soon after the opening of the Copey Learning Center to begin its 2020 school year, COVID-19 arrived. Daily classes held at the Copey Learning Center were suspended.
While we waited for approval to restart, our annual Pathway Project involving Emory & Henry College (E&H College) students traveling to Copey to volunteer and Copey students traveling to the United States was cancelled.
In spite of the Pathway Project being shut down, the Copey students were still invited to participate in the Summer Scholars program conducted on-line by E&H College. Three of the Copey students attended.
The Copey Learning Center Takes Bold Action…!
In the summer the Copey Learning Center’s Board boldly decided to launch a 15 week on-line educational services program to avoid losing a full year of English education. To accomplish this on-line education…”Friends” was called on to actively recruit the team of volunteer teachers needed.
Volunteer teachers were needed to make this bold idea work. They would need to be high caliber, experienced, devoted, resourceful, and available to commit to 15 weeks of service.
Conducting an on-line education services program internationally screamed out challenges. Language barriers, electronic home device problems, and network issues, were among only a few of the anticipated challenges needed to be faced. Other challenges included the availability and capability of volunteer teachers willing to make a 15 plus week commitment. In short, everything and everyone had to be or do something extraordinary.
“Keep up the optimism, great things can be accomplished with a little hard work and dedicated people. Proud of the teachers and students who are working so hard to make Copey Learning Center a success, despite the changes!!!” by Kay Patrick
The names of the volunteer teachers aka “Dream Team” are located on the menu under the “Dream Team“. Take a minute to review. Imagine what it would be like to agree to this type of commitment. They did and their positive impact on the Copey students is beyond measure. This was witnessed during the “Closing Ceremony” held at the end of the project on November 28th. There was a very obvious mutual love and respect developed between the teachers and the students during those weeks.
Our “non-financial” report claims an estimated 200 hours of volunteer service rendered by the teachers and the rest of us involved for the sole purpose of providing English education under the very restrictive and non-conventional teaching conditions.
I will never have the means or words to fully convey my wholehearted thanks to the “Dream Team”. I asked 7 “Friends” to join me on this project and each one said yes (one exception) without the slightest hesitation. The one volunteer unable to join the team was truly unavailable. Three more volunteers joined I had never met and were great additions. With still a few weeks to go, several E&H College students were added to the team.
The entire team hailed from Copey and San Jose, Costa Rica, Canada, North Carolina, South Carolina, Ohio, Tennessee, Virginia, and Washington state. An international team of “Friends” all joined together to meet the educational challenges in Copey caused by the virus. Truly a “non-financial” accomplishment worth millions to us all!
“Don’t Miss The Joy!”