Sunday, December 19, 2010

The International High School in Austin Texas

Michelle and I had some money saved for the end of the year giving campaign. We were at The Austin Stone Community Church last weekend and they had a section in the bulletin for “Giving”. The International High School was listed as needing 140 food baskets. The original goal listed 3 weeks earlier was 150. Knowing this is where there was a definite need, Michelle and I started researching the opportunity. We quickly found why only 10 food baskets were filled; it was not an easy task to get the baskets filled. There was shopping involved, you could not donate money or give a gift card, you had to actually buy all the requested items. The list included: Items to feed a family of 5 to include a Turkey, Ham or vegan substitute, potatoes, stuffing, vegetables, onions, celery, chicken stock, cranberry sauce, bread, fruit and dessert. I set out to do my best to fulfill the list on Monday. The folks at the local HEB thought I was crazy. There were plenty of sales and I was able to save a lot of money. As Michelle was sleeping (She works nights) I grabbed as much as I could and headed to the check out. After getting things loaded in boxes, I remembered that I drove the convertible, not the truck. Surprisingly we were able to get everything loaded with no room to spare. The International High School was close to the HEB I was at, which is why I shopped there. I left the parking lot to make the quick 5 mile trip, just off Oak Knoll. My GPS brought me right to the International School. I walked in and asked for the school counselor, the administrative assistant said “Nobody by that name works here” I soon found out I was looking for the International High School not the International School. I checked my Droid and got the address for the real International High School. 18 miles away, luckily I had some time, so I headed that way. 40 minutes later I arrived at what looked like Clint Middle School. I assumed the International High School was close by. Google searches are never wrong, right? WRONG. At this point I am getting irritated. The AISD police officer did not know where the school was, nor did anyone at Clint Middle School. Back to the droid and modify the search. I find a new address, type it into my GPS and head out. I called the International High School for the 10th and final time and once again I got the answering machine. My phone rang when I was about 4 miles away from the destination on my GPS; it was the counselor from the International High School finally. I was greeted by 6 staff members when I arrived. They helped me unload the car and invited me in to get a quick tour of the school. I was amazed at the passion of the teachers and staff. I was told that out of 187 total students only 4 are NOT on free or reduced lunch. Most students struggle with English and some do not know how to add and subtract. All students are expected to keep the standards of the school district. Most 9th grade students take Algebra, these students can’t add, imagine being expected to keep the same standards. I can’t lie; they made me feel like a rock star. I felt guilty taking the credit. The glory belongs to God not me. It did make me think of the need for so much, right under our noses; I wonder how many people know of this need? I didn’t.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for your perseverance in serving those kids!!!
    Todd Engstrom
    Pastor of Missional Communities
    The Austin Stone Community Church