Brighten Stevens is in the fifth grade at St. Francis Xavier School. Her birthday is on November 17, which is close to the holidays. Her grandparents, aunts and uncles and family friends had been asking her for a birthday list. She really did not have anything on her list that she really needed or wanted this year. Her family ended up giving her money for her big day.
Brighten had wanted to give back to her school for a long time. She said, “I actually remember when we had a school mass at Brophy, along with the Brophy students, to celebrate the creation of Jesuits West Provincial. Father Scott Santarosa, S.J., was there from California, and he spoke at the mass. At the end of mass, I was actually crying because it was so moving. I realized then that I was a part of a big family, and that is when I realized that I wanted to give back to my school.”
Brighten made a donation of $200 dollars to school. She would like for the money to be given to “restoring something” or buy something new that is really needed. When asked how it made her feel to give back she said, “ It made me feel happy that I gave back to my community instead of buying something for myself that I did not want or need.”
Brighten said, “ I actually feel like I am part of a family here at St. Francis, everyone is supporting each other and helping each other learn. My teachers, especially my teachers this year (fifth grade) have been very supportive. They are very relatable, you can talk to them; it is almost like having second parents. I know I will remember my 5th grade teachers for a long time.
Clyde Parker is in second grade at St. Francis Xavier School. Clyde collected $26 from his own money that he had been collecting for a long time. When asked why he decided to give his money to school he said, “ I had been thinking about it for a long time and decided I wanted to give back to the school to help with getting new playground equipment. Since I have been going to St. Francis Xavier since Preschool, and recess is one of my favorite parts of the day, I wanted to help out.
St. Francis Xavier thanks the many students, along with Brighten and Clyde who have given back to the school over the last few years.