The Office of Student Services hosted its Second Annual Volunteer Appreciation Ceremony on April 10 to express gratitude to volunteers, donors and partners for the amazing work they do to support schools and improve students’ lives.
Held at the Cleveland L. Dennard Conference Center at Atlanta Technical College, the ceremony honored 20 individual volunteers, donors and partnering organizations. The program was held in recognition of National Volunteer Week on April 7-13 to celebrate the impact of volunteer service and the power of volunteers to tackle society’s greatest challenge, build stronger communities and be a force that transforms the world. The week also shines a light on the people and causes that inspire service, recognizing and thanking volunteers who lend their time, talent and voice to make a difference in their communities.
During the program, APS social workers and Student Services staff members offered remarks and presented partners and donors with commemorative plaques.
Some of those partners include:
- The Atlanta Police Department and MARTA truancy officers;
- Purposity, an organization that matches students’ needs with a community of people who have a desire to help and do good;
- Achieve Atlanta for providing nearly 800 scholarships to students;
- The Anti-Defamation League for working with school counselors to implement inclusive and supportive activities for all students through the “No Place for Hate” campaign;
- The Atlanta Community Food Bank for helping feed APS students and families in need;
- Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta Ronald McDonald Care Mobile and the Asthma Center RMCM; and
- Rack Room Shoes for being a partner since 2008 and providing 150 shoes to students in the South Atlanta Cluster
Dr. Nicole Spiller, director of Student & Intervention Supports, said APS partners are much more than individuals and organizations who write checks to assist students in need.
She described partners as “accessories, accomplices and colleagues.”
“You are our accessory. You come along beside us and supplement our work. Our resources are often so limited, and our volunteers and partners come along beside and bridge those gaps,” Dr. Spiller told the audience. “As accomplices, you conspire with us to identify needs, meet these needs, analyze the results, see where the gap remains, and repeat that cycle. As colleagues, you have volunteered to join Team APS for the sake of students and have chosen to co-labor with us.
“You are also our friends,” she added. “You share a bond of mutual affection in service to schools and students. You have stuck with us when times were hard, you have trusted us with your time and resources, and we have trusted you with our most valuable possession: our students. On behalf of these students, our schools and our district, thank you.”