According to SM Victoria Richardson, this was the experience of students at St. Joseph Academy in Milwaukee, WI, while doing service in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
According to Sister Victoria, students collected loose change and “green backs” to help support a family through Heifer International, a sustainable group that helps to eliminate poverty by providing a means for a family to have food and earn income. The organization also trains the family in environmentally sound sustainable farming. SJA students worked toward the Honeybee gift donation. This includes honeybees, hive, box and training in beekeeping techniques.
The students’ gift could help a family from 18 different countries including Mexico and Ghana by boosting income through the sale of honey, wax and pollen. It will stimulate growth of the family’s crops through pollination and also help with their neighbor’s crops, thus having larger yields for fruits and vegetables.
Sister Victoria explained that, in giving the gift of honeybees, SJA students demonstrated the Felician Core Values of respect for human dignity by helping a family to support themselves; compassion with children helping children; transformation by improving the family’s food situation by providing them with a sustainable means of support; solidarity with the poor by providing an ongoing gift that will help them fight poverty; and by modeling justice and peace with children helping children in need worldwide.
SJA students raised $400 which will be able to help 13 different families with 13 honeybee packages. Sister Victoria said, “This gift is the gift that will keep on giving.”