Each Wednesday an important all-day program takes place at PCA called Service Learning. Students participate in a yearlong cohort led by a staff member and serve the Fort Collins community. The program has many benefits, including learning hard work, commitment and teamwork as well as important business skills for a future or current job. Our students, who achieve success through a supportive community, are given an opportunity to learn how it feels to give back to that community
This group participates in various local art projects including designing and painting a transformer cabinet for the City of Fort Collins Art in Public Places program and designing a line drawing for the Paver's Project. They learn how to throw clay on a potter's wheel when they make bowls for the Empty Bowls Event for the Food Bank of Larimer County. The students are expected to demonstrate a strong work ethic and realize the effectiveness of the arts in a place beyond the classroom.
GiveNext focuses on youth philanthropy and actively engages students in the process of learning the needs of the community and the non-profit organizations that help to meet those needs. Students volunteer at different organizations and invite them to apply for grants awarded from the generosity of local businesses and foundations. They create a mission statement to guide the process and determine which non-profits will receive grants through a scoring process.They plan and host a ceremony at the end of the year when grants are awarded and learn the vital role that nonprofits and philanthropy play in their community.
Elementary School Teacher and Student Support
Preschool through 5th grade students at Irish Elementary and Putnam Elementary light up when they see PCA students coming because it means they will get to play flag football and soccer at lunch time. It also means that our students will have someone to read to, help with math or simply someone to be a friend to. Students are not the only ones who light up when PCA students arrive because teachers also love our presence and help with cutting, laminating, copying, cleaning or chaperoning. PCA students leave every Wednesday with the feeling that they have made a difference in someone else’s life.
Crafts For A Cause :
This group is an on campus service learning where students learn how to crochet, sew, create and use their artistic skills to help others. We have made the following for others:
- Tie-knot blankets for cancer patients going through chemotherapy
- Customized bookmarks for elementary students
- Bowl cozies for those in need
- Crocheted scarves and hats for elementary students
- Sewed walker caddies for the residents at Oakridge
The students have learned that they can use their creativity for good and help serve others through their passions. The class is also a good way to model a job that they will have in the future. The students have a time card and have to clock in and out and visit with their manager (Michaela) to see how they are producing. Great job skills!
For the past three years these students have planned, prepared, and served the Wednesday lunch meal at the Catholic Charities Hospitality Kitchen. This is a valuable service for our students to be able to help those that are struggling.
We have also volunteered at many places, including: Hearts & Horses, Fossil Creek Open Spaces, the Gardens on Spring Creek, Devil’s Backbone, Habitat for Humanity Fort Collins, Loveland Habitat Restore, Homeless Gear, and the City of Fort Collins Natural Areas.