The concept of home loomed large in this year's Homecoming celebration for students and faculty. Our Crusaders spent a full day working on a number of different service projects that benefited the school and local communities.
"Last year's Homecoming was focused on school spirit," said Dr. Thomas C. Pellegrino, President. "This year, we really wanted to discover what the word 'home' means to us. This day of service stemmed from the Neighborhood School concept and operationalized our mission as a Holy Cross school."
Students worked on three out of seven service opportunities. These included:
- Participating in unified volleyball with people from the Waterbury ARC, Inc.
- Playing Bingo with current grandparents and individuals from Easter SEALS
- Creating over 100 care packages containing socks, nonperishable food items, waters and other supplies for Brian's Bags, a local nonprofit organization in memory of Brian O'Connell
- Putting together and decorating over 200 snack bags for children who are battling cancer and their families through Colin's Crew; donations came from members of our school community
- Doing arts and crafts projects and reading with 32 kids from the Children Community School; each child was given a book to take home with him/her.
- Cleaned the outside of our campus and painted some of the poles
- Worked with the Sisters of the Congregation of Notre Dame to clean windows, do yard work and dust
Many described this day of service as an emotional day filled with hard work and joy. Students and faculty appreciated the opportunity to be together and work on something that was meaningful. "The theme of home was front and center in everything we were doing," said Dr. Pellegrino.
"This day was a perfect fit and made our Homecoming Weekend even better than it already is," said Tommy Pompei, Principal. "Our whole school really embraced it. It gave our students a perspective on the blessings we have at Holy Cross."
"We had an amazing response from our students," said Megan Dwyer '05, Director of Student Experience. "At the end of the day, students articulated that is what Holy Cross is all about. They lived out our mission as it was meant to be."
Due to the enthusiastic response and great feedback from the Children Community School, Colin's Crew and Brian's Bags, the school leadership is planning another day of service in the spring.
"This day of service took place on our campus," said Dr. Pellegrino. "For the second one in the spring, we want to go off campus. As a Neighborhood School, we want to share our talents and blessings with others in the Greater Waterbury area."