For the Greater Good: Groton Schools United

LA, Groton School & Groton-Dunstable Rise Against Hunger

Groton, Mass. — Astounding numbers, all:

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3

55

4,500

6,200

18,144

and 1

Impressive digits that account for two days, three schools, 55 volunteers, $4,500 (raised by Lawrence Academy), $6,200 raised overall (by LA, Groton School, and Groton-Dunstable) and 18,144 meals packaged for one (1) cause: Rise Against Hunger.

Day 1: Three schools gathered to "Rise Against Hunger."

January 13, 2019. Day 1: Three schools gathered to “Rise Against Hunger.”

Rise Against Hunger x 5

“It’s our fifth annual Rise Against Hunger meal packaging event,” said Rosin Casey, a Lawrence Academy junior from Pepperell. “In total we’ll have made 77,000 meals for the total five years.

“So, it’s all really exciting that all our work is paying off.”

However, this year, Rosin and her fellow LA Spartans had company; lots of company.

“This is the first year that we have all three schools here from the town of Groton,” explained Rosin, who co-chairs the Rise Against Hunger club with fellow Pepperal Native Kayli Grise ’20. “We have Groton Dunstable regional high school and Groton School, who has been with us for the past three years now, helping us package meals.

“So now we’ve gotten the whole town of Groton to help do this huge event, which is awesome.”

Also impressive is the commitment shown by 55 students and community members from all three schools.

“It’s become a real tradition,” said Robert O’Rourke, Groton School’s Director of Community Engagement. “I have two of our students who are here for the third time, and they’re really excited to be back.

“When I advertised the event, it filled up immediately,” continued O’Rourke. “I think many students have heard how exciting it is to be here and to be part of this.

“However, I think the best part of it is a chance to connect with our peers here at Lawrence Academy and also Groton-Dunstable, and just have students with shared interests — who come from different backgrounds — have a chance to contribute to an important project together.”

Together

Together was a word that echoed in the LA student center, where volunteers moved station to station packaging meals to be distributed around the world.

“It’s fun to see all three schools together, isn’t it?” asked Marie’Anne Durst. “It’s not all that often that everybody’s together. In fact, I don’t think that we have ever done anything together!

“It was really exciting to be a part of this.”

But beyond the cooperation, remains the primary goal.

“It is the idea that we’re fighting against hunger,” added Durst. “That’s especially because it’s for children, and it’s, as Kimberly explained it to me, it’s an international and national, too.

“So that’s what’s really exciting.”

Excitement Personified

Kimberly, of course, is Lawrence Academy’s Kimberly Poulin, Groton resident, Assistant Dean of Students, and Director of Community Engagement.

“We’re grateful to your peers at Lawrence Academy, Kimberly and her team, who I know do an enormous amount of work behind the scenes to make this possible,” said O’Rourke. ” I’m really grateful for that. I’m glad to keep this partnership going at maybe even to think about more ways to can collaborate because I think there’s a lot to be said for working together.”

Casey agreed, adding, “we owe it all to her. I mean, she is amazing.

“The work she puts in, and the amount that she cares — not only for the club, but everyone that we’re helping through this whole process — it’s inspirational.”

For her part, Mrs. Poulin threw the praise right back to the students from all three high schools.

Day 2: The LA crew.

January 27, 2019. Day 2: The LA crew…

“That was a goal from Sam Rosenstein ’17, from our original leader here at LA,” said Poulin of the participation from every corner of the region.

“Sam and I kind of giggled one day and said, how great would it be if we could eventually have all three high schools in Groton be in the same room.

“So, I’m really glad that we finally reached that point and next year I know that Groton Dunstable is totally with us. And I know Groton School will be, as well.”

And, as far as the praise pointed in her direction, Poulin deflected it, preferring instead to prepare for next year.

Next Year…

“I get to work with students,” she said with a smile. “That means that I’m lucky. That means that I’m the one that’s in a really good place.

“I get to watch them learn, figure out, problem solve, decide what they want for their goals and then reach for it,” she said.

So, what’s next year’s goal? Another impressive number:

*100,000

As in, crossing the 100,000 meals packed for the Rise Against Hunger club at LA.

“It was honestly a surreal moment ringing the gong for the last time after packaging the last box into the truck,” said Grise. All the hours we’ve poured into raising money, it seemed as though each piece fell into place.

“It wasn’t a minute after we cleaned up that we sat down as a club and began to discuss plans for next year. We plan on packaging more than 20,000 meals our senior year to reach over 100,000 meals collectively.

“I look forward to working with both Groton School and Groton Dunstable next year to accomplish this goal.”

Kayli Grise, co-chair of LA’s Rise Against Hunger squad, hits the final gong.


*100,000 total in 6 years, which means LA, Groton, and GDRHS have to package at least 23,000 meals – LA’s largest meal-packing event ever.

Three Groton Schools Rise Against Hunger

Students from LA, Groton School, GDRHS Join Together for Meal Preparation Event, January 13

Groton, Mass. — It’s almost time! Lawrence Academy’s annual meal packing event for Rise Against Hunger happens this weekend, on Sunday, January 13, 2019.

And, this year, Groton, Mass. is represented by all three high schools — LA, Groton School, and Groton Dunstable Regional High School — whose students will literally work to end hunger.

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Rise Against Hunger 2018

Rise Against Hunger (formerly Stop Hunger Now), an international hunger relief organization that distributes food and life-changing aid to the world’s most vulnerable, mobilizes the necessary resources in an effort to end hunger by 2030.

Over the past several years, Lawrence Academy has been a partner of Rise Against Hunger, mobilizing its own best resource — it’s students — in just one facet of the school’s community service program.

We’ll be sure to post pictures and video from this year’s event, but, for now, enjoy some scenes from previous years.

Media inquiry? Contact the LA Communications Department.

Excitement Personified: Kimberly Poulin

Groton, MA — Simply put: Lawrence Academy’s Kimberly Poulin is a nexus of energy.

LA’s Assistant Dean of Students and Director of Community Engagement, Mrs. Poulin also works as a learning specialist with the academic support office.”I am here at Lawrence Academy because this is where I should be,” said Kimberly earlier this summer. “I love working with adolescents.

“I feel young and energized and happy in my life when I’m around them; I can stay connected to the world when I’m working with students.

“The reason I’ve been able to shift from the classroom…to Student Life is that I love finding what keeps them happy and passionate and playing!”

Enjoying the Work

poulin_picIt’s clear that Mrs. Poulin enjoys her work, whether it’s collaborating with a student group to garner members, setting up a community service opportunity (like Rise Against Hunger – see video below), or helping student leaders develop a field day program – she’s plugged into that passion and playfulness.

“I’ll bring up some wacky idea, and they’ll sit with it for a minute and be like, ‘Actually I think that would be kind of cool, why don’t we do that?’” she explained of her brainstorming sessions. “And you know, some of my ideas don’t take off, and that’s okay.

“I mean, that’s also par for the course, and it’s good for students to see that it doesn’t work out, and it’s like, okay, move on, that wasn’t a good idea.

“Let’s try something else,” she said.

Can-do

Mrs. Poulin’s can-do, effervescent attitude flows into her connection with her advisees, as well; however, Kimberly explained the relationship in her advisory is even more intense.

“I think my relationship with them is a bit different,” explained Mrs. Poulin, whose sons Tyler ’18 and Hunter ’21 attend LA. “There is a little bit more cheerleading that goes on… but also a lot of love and a lot of care and a lot of opportunity to just hanging out.

“You know, I’ll find myself a lot of times eating with an advisee just for lunch, or we go for a walk, or we go for ice cream, I mean, and that’s just creating a connection.”

And it’s Kimberly’s energy that allows her to connect with so many students across her many roles.

“Again, I love working with adolescents,” she said. “I’ve always said to my husband [Michael, who also works at LA in the Athletic Department], the moment that I cannot listen to regular radio – I’m done; I’m out of education. You know?

“The moment that I complain about something that’s teenager-ish, it’s time for me to go.”

That said, LA hopes Mrs. Poulin keeps listening to the radio, for a long, long time to come.

The first in a series of occasional features on Lawrence Academy faculty…