Learning For LImbs
CASTLE ROCK-To walk through Mesa Middle School, it’s obvious that Spirit Week is in full swing; from the signs on the walls, to streamers in the halls, and the anticipation surrounding the dance at the end of the week. But the excitement doesn’t stop here. There are people across the world anxiously waiting to see what happens and how their lives will change thanks to the work done by Mesa students.
“Right now, kids over there are only wishing that this one school, Mesa Middle School, is making enough money for them. And their parents are also wishing,” says eighth-grader Max Brunson.
Mesa Middle School recently partnered up with LIMBS International to participate in its Learning for LIMBS movement. LIMBS International is a non-profit organization whose mission is to restore mobility to amputees throughout the developing world by engaging communities and transforming lives through affordable, sustainable prosthetic solutions. The program works with schools to educate students about those needs and helps them raise money to provide artificial limbs to people.
“I think we can do a lot more than we think we can, just by showing a video and telling students, 'if you buy these socks for $5 you can help someone who doesn’t have a limb.' We don’t think about that every day. It isn’t normal. But some people in third world countries don’t have a leg and then they can’t get a job, and they can’t support a family and stuff. So it makes a big difference,” says eighth-grader, Aubrey Worker.
Student Council sponsor, Jennifer Sheets said once her students in Student Council began planning, the entire mission took off. “When the kids heard about this organization they took it on with their whole being. They really thought this would be an awesome thing to do. We had challenges within some of our classrooms so students got a small taste to see what it would be like to be an amputee. They had races where they tied their shoes with only one hand. Or went through an obstacle course with one leg. They planned the events, the dance, they gave up their lunches and free time to sell socks and tickets. They did everything.”
The original goal was to raise enough money to help one amputee, by providing them with an artificial limb. But after all the socks were sold and tickets to the dance were counted, Mesa students raised enough money to provide three artificial limbs for amputees.
“It’s mind-blowing to see what we’ve done. It’s so cool how we can do that by raising money selling socks,” says eighth-grader Hannah Johnson.
As one of DCSD’s seven International Baccalaureate schools, Mesa continues to search for ways to make a difference not only in their own backyard, but on a bigger scale.
“It’s really unique – what stood out for me was it's not very expensive for a limb but it’s a major life changing thing that can help them with their job and family,” added Worker.
Teaching these students firsthand what it means to be part of a bigger community and make a difference in the world, one pair of socks at a time.