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Paterson Students Volunteer In Haiti Over Spring Break

PCSST students volunteered at an orphanage in Haiti Photo Credit: contributed
This was the Embrace Club's second visit to Haiti. Photo Credit: contributed

PATERSON, N.J. -- Students from Paterson Charter School for Science & Technology’s Embrace Club and The World is Our Classroom Club spent spring break volunteering at an orphanage in Haiti and traveling throughout Europe, respectively.

Students from PCSST's Embrace club traveled to Haiti, for the second year in a row. This year, the club's goal was to raise enough money to build a generator system at the orphanage. The club met its goal, with donations from school staff, students and the community.

Members of the club were there, to purchase and install the generator -- and for the first time in seven years, the orphanage had running electricity. Students also donated clothes, food, school supplies and toiletries to the orphanage.

The Embrace Club was founded in 2015 by a group of students who wanted to help those in dire need of life's basic necessities, such as food, water and education. Each year, students set out a fundraising goal for an agreed-upon project in places like Haiti, and then travel to the destination and perform hands-on work.

Fifteen high school student members of The World is Our Classroom Club traveled to Germany, Italy and Switzerland during the break. The students were able to see how these countries blend their rich history with modern-day life.

In Germany, students visited Neuschwanstein Castle and the Dachau Concentration Camp. In Venice, they saw how the famous Murano glass was made, and in Switzerland they took a cable car up to the top of Mt. Pilatus, while listening to traditional yodeling and alphorns.

Traveling through Austria, students saw the Russian crown jewels and Imperial Easter eggs, and Romeo and Juliet's balcony in Verona. This club's aim is to allow students to learn from hands-on experience in the world.

"It is incredible to see our students' desire to give back to communities and immerse themselves in different cultures. Clubs such as the Embrace Club and The World is Our Classroom build leadership skills and open our students' eyes to current issues around the world," said Riza Gurcanli, School Lead of PCSST.

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