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School Objectives:

By becoming involved in OHH, an elementary school can expect:

  • To enrich the lives of their students by exposing them to the needs of others and helping them to discover their own ability to make an impact on the lives of those less fortunate.

  • To introduce their students to a new culture and way of life.

  • To have the opportunity for the entire school (students, teachers, and administrators) and the community (parents and friends) to be involved in a unique humanitarian project where the givers and the receivers are both children, and where the seed of love, communication, sharing, and compassion can be gently planted and carefully nourished.

Criteria for Involvement:

These specific criteria must be met in order to ensure full support and cooperation between the OHH mission and the elementary school:

  • Each elementary school must choose a liaison responsible for communicating between the school and the OHH team. The liaison should be a teacher, employee of the school, or PTA member. The liaison is responsible for organizing and overseeing the school’s participation. At Borland Manor, Deborah Murdock, a first grade teacher, acted as the liaison. She ensured the timely collection of donated items, created a team of PTA members to help with the projects, and delivered the items to the OHH team before the mission in March.

  • Each elementary school must have clear proof of support for the project by their school board.

  • Each elementary school must work with the OHH team in order to decide what fundraisers or item drives will be necessary for the mission.

Fundraising & Learning Ideas:

Using Borland Manor Elementary as an example, these guidelines should be used as a foundation for other elementary schools to construct their own plan of involvement. Schools should not feel limited to these examples, and new ideas are welcome.

  • Each school should try to make Spanish books for the children at their companion school using letters or pictures created by the students or pictures of the students themselves. A page in the book might include a picture of a student playing soccer with a Spanish description of the sport, or a picture of a student with their favorite toy accompanied by a description of the toy in Spanish. This not only allows the students of the school to learn and be exposed to Spanish, but also allows the children of the companion school to connect with them and be exposed to different experiences. The OHH team has books from Borland Manor Elementary that can be used as a template for what the school might do.

  • The Spanish books might have a specific theme, such as personal hygiene. Contents might include pictures of children brushing their teeth, washing their hands, etc.

  • It is extremely important to take pictures of all activities and fundraising. The OHH team would like to bring these pictures on the mission and also may use them in future presentations.

  • Please limit your fundraising and donation drives to specific items, such as shoes, clothes, book bags, or books. We would prefer to only take an item on a mission if we have enough for every child. The best way to ensure this is to focus each school on a specific item for collection. Be sure to communicate what item the school wishes to collect to the OHH team before any collection has begun, in case another school is already collecting the same item or another item is more urgently needed.

  • Monetary collections and donations are also very important. The money may be directed to buy medicine needed by the children, to ensure that collected supplies can be delivered to the recipient school, or to sponsor one of the OHH team members. Borland Manor raised enough money to sponsor the travel ticket for one of the medical students participating in the 2007 mission to Taisha.

  • Getting the press involved is a great way to gain community support for the school’s project. At Borland Manor, Mrs. Murdock contacted the local newspaper with information about the latest fundraiser or project, and provided pictures to be published along with the story.

  • OHH is a registered 501(c)3 non-profit, meaning that all donations to our fund (administered by the MCV Foundation) are tax-deductible. This can help influence businesses to donate money, services, or even gift certificates for fund raising activities and raffles.

  • Examples of Fundraising Activities:

    • Silent Auction

    • Change drive/ competition between classes

    • Raffle for gift baskets/ prizes

  • Examples of Items to be Raised:

    • Shoes

    • Clothes

    • Toothbrushes/ toothpaste

    • Coloring books/ crayons

    • Toys

    • Backpacks

    • Children’s books in Spanish

    All donated items should either be new or gently used


Below is an example of the timeline that an elementary school might follow. Borland Manor Elementary used this schedule, but other schools may find that fundraising and other collections are more successful at different times of the year.

  • August/September: The liaison should be works with the school board, brainstorming the types of fundraisers and items to collect while consulting with the OHH team.

  • November: Silent auction

  • December: Toy drive

  • January/February: Students make books of themselves to send to Taisha.

  • March 1st: All items are collected and delivered to the OHH office to be sorted and packed for the trip in mid-March.

  • June: A member of the OHH team delivers a presentation about the trip to the school along with pictures, and encourages the students to share what they learned through their participation in the project.

The Responsibilities of the OHH Planning and Organizing Committee

  • OHH will provide guidance throughout the development and implementation of the various fundraising activities.

  • The OHH team will keep open communication with the elementary school liaison and be available to discuss the school’s progress.

  • At the beginning of the project, an OHH liaison will visit the elementary school or school board to give a brief presentation and description of the project, review the responsibilities of the elementary school, and describe various possible fundraising activities.

  • OHH will provide any needed information, including the number, age, gender, and academic levels of children in the recipient school. Pictures and drawings of the children and facilities at the recipient schools will also be made available.

  • OHH will provide sample pictures and books, as well as information about donations and activities of other elementary schools, such as Borland Manor Elementary.

  • OHH will provide information on the overall mission preparation, including a description of the medical student team members selected to participate.

  • After the team has returned from mission, but before the school year ends, the OHH team will send a trip member to deliver a presentation to students with pictures of the trip. This presentation will demonstrate how the student’s participation has touched the lives of the children at their companion school. While this is not a requirement, we feel this presentation reinforces the meaning behind the trip and allows the school’s students to fully realize how they have impacted the lives of others.
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Date Last Modified: June 30, 2010
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