"I Love St. Alban's because..."
REASON NO. 5
Service Learning 
and Environmental Stewardship 


St. Alban's is committed to a community service program that teaches serving others along with the stewardship of God's creations. Students are taught to use resources responsibly, increase environmental awareness through a rigorous recycling program and to love and serve people who are in need. Our students are committed to giving to others in need through our chapel fund programs and serving a variety  of organizations including the Good Samaritan Center, The American Heart Association, Tip of Tex K-9 Rescue, Harlingen Humane Society and our local Food Pantry. 
 
In 2011, St. Alban's was the ONLY Elementary School awarded the 
Ken Bastian Service Learning Award by the 
Southwestern Association of Episcopal Schools (SAES).
 

                 


Environmental Stewardship

 

       At St. Alban's Episcopal Day School in Harlingen, teachers and staff use the tarnish of trashy beaches, littered parks, homeless animals, and people in need as an opportunity to light innumerable candles- candles for improving lives for people and animals facing difficult situations, and candles of knowledge to teach students how to do things better. Individually, each candle may do no more than illuminate the space around it. Collectively, they have the potential to create a glow brilliant enough to brighten the world.

        Our days are dedicated to influencing children for the best. We can have no higher hope for their lives on this earth than this: that they will, because of our help in lighting that candle, seek to pass the flame; that they will readily give of themselves to feed someone who is hungry, send a card to someone who is lonely, offer comfort to a child in crisis, care for a creature unable to fend for itself, make a difference, change the world. 

   

"It has been said that one can choose to curse the darkness or light a candle. If we can teach our kids first and foremost to be good people, the rest will fall into place. We want them not just to be good, but to be good for something. There is a saying that no act of kindness is ever wasted, and I believe that. We teach our kids to pick up trash that isn't theirs, to give a teddy bear to a child they do not know, to donate food to a meal they will not eat. Whether they know it or not, the good that they have flung out into the world in these simple acts makes the world better. Maybe it saved an animal that would've otherwise become entangled in the trash they picked up, maybe it soothed a child facing a crisis, maybe it made a single parent's day a little easier. The repercussions of that are boundless. Imagine that circle of blessing, and then imagine more: what if everybody approached life like this? The whole world would be different. I truly believe that what we're doing here at St. A's is making a difference, however small, in this world. To think that we can teach hundreds of children how to be a blessing to others and the Earth that we share, and that they will in turn someday raise up their own children to be a blessing...that's amazing. ...and I'm grateful to be a part of it!" - Jennifer Wilson

      

 

The Harlingen Neighborhood Food Pantry
 

 

 

 

 

                                                                                                                                                                                              From left to right:  Elaine Lockhart,Bill Horton, 

   Wende & Jim Coffman,  and Martha Moody        

 

The Neighborhood Food Pantry, started by Nancy and Harold Gillogly, plus 6 other volunteers, originated on May 15, 2001 serving approximately 1,800 lbs. of food weekly to the clients. Food was distributed from the First Presbyterian Church, Jackson, 5th and Van Buren. The objective of the food pantry then was serving low income residents in the downtown area each week.                   

  

Originally the pantry was open 2 days per week. However, due to lack of clientele, the pantry went to one day a week shortly after beginning. Food was packed by volunteers into boxes and sacks and given to the clients, according to family numbers. They worked in conjunction with the Rio Grande Valley Food Bank in McAllen.

  

In 2012 The Neighborhood Food Pantry changed to Harlingen Neighborhood Food Pantry, which it is called today. It is a non-profit, 501(C)(3) organization, consisting of an 8-member governing board, with a President, Vice-President, Secretary /Treasurer. This board meets the 1st Monday of each month at 9:00 A.M. for the purpose of conducting pantry business.

The objective is to serve low-income residents of the down-town area, distribute baby supplies to mothers, provide non-cooking food for approximately 30 homeless people per week and provide food in emergency situations as per requested by the Harlingen Police Dept., the Family Crisis Center and others. 

 

The complete volunteer roster consists of 60+ members, not including youth group volunteers, such as St. Alban's School, Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, etc.

  

 
"St. Alban's helps the Harlingen Neighborhood Food Pantry by making donations of food, baby items, volunteering, fund raising events, preparation of the homeless food (non-cooking bags),praying for our volunteers and  clients. What I enjoy most about the Food Pantry is the fellowship, the sincerity, the family atmosphere, the willingness to help and serve people needing an uplift in their lives, both materialistically and spiritually. Nothing is more gratifying than seeing a frown on a clients' face turn into a smile from ear to ear! And the words, 'Thank-you for helping us'. Hopefully, it helps St. Alban's students to see society as it exists today and answer God's request to help the poor and needy. The Food Pantry is like a leach in the sea, it gets hold of you and makes one want to do more of God's love, work and stewardship. I thoroughly enjoy working with each and every client."          -Jim Coffman  

 


The 6th graders love getting the opportunity to serve others by volunteering at the Local Neighborhood Food Pantry, and have gained experience in serving others through this wonderful program.
 
 
 
"I help pass out the frozen goods to the families in need. I love seeing all the families lined up in the morning, it makes me feel good, knowing that I am getting the opportunity to serve others in need. While participating in this program I have learned that not everyone has enough food to feed their families and I should be thankful for what God has given me."        Madison Callier
 

"I work at the miscellaneous table, handing goods to families in need. I enjoy getting the opportunity to help families in need. The program has taught me to be grateful for the things I have, and I have realized that not all people have what I have.       - Caleb Waters

"I help at the food pantry by passing out canned corn to the families in need. My favorite part is being able to brighten a total strangers day by giving them a simple smile and saying 'Have a nice day!' This opportunity teaches me that even though I may not know the families in need, I should always be lending a helping hand."    -Alyssa Dale
 
 
Below are a few pictures of our 6th graders at the Food Pantry and our 4th graders making food bags that we take to the Food Pantry every month. Every grade level helps prepare the food bag for the 6th grade to take when they help with our Harlingen Neighborhood Food Pantry. What an amazing opportunity it is, to help serve others!


    


Other opportunities we have to 
serve our community are:
 


- The American Heart Association
- This year our students raised $2,256.84 for Jump Rope For Heart!
 
- Tip of Texas K-9 Rescue & Harlingen Humane Society
- Give A Dog A Bone: Students buy paper bones to decorate the bulletin board in the front of the school. 
- Our students and teachers help collect dog and cat food at Christmas to help feed the animals in the shelters.
- collect aluminum cans for Harlingen Humane Society
 
- Salvation Army
- Each year, at Christmas, the 4th,5th and 6th grade classes each receive 4-6 Salvation Army Angels to shop for. We use this time to think about others and give to those in need. Our students use chapel funds and donate their own money to spend on their class angels.
 
- Phonebook Recycling 
- money received goes to Hugh Ramsey Nature Center 
 
- EarthKind Rose Garden
 
- Capri Sun drink pouch recycling project
 
-4th Grade class - Bears for Maggie's House at Christmas
 
- In lieu of gift exchange, St. Alban's staff made donations for Sunny Glen Childrens Home.
 
- Schoolwide Recycling of paper/plastic/cardboard 
 
- Kinder, 1st Grade and 2nd Grade collect toiletries, food, clothing, and games for the Boys and Girls Club.


Mary Katherine Duffy, Head of School
1417 E. Austin
Harlingen, TX 78550
(956) 428-2326
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Mission Statement
St. Alban's Episcopal Day School is dedicated to the guidance and education of children in an environment which develops the WHOLE child; academically, socially, emotionally, physically and spiritually.