At Southridge, we’re proud to include service as one of our four defining pillars. Students are provided many opportunities to participate in, and learn from, voluntary service experiences in our school, local community, and the world.
One of the organizations we support through this program is the Surrey Urban Mission Society (SUM) – a volunteer-driven, community kitchen providing meals seven days a week to those in need located in Whalley.
Our relationship with SUM first started back in 2007, when students attending the Leaders Today (now Me to We) Global Leadership Academy had the opportunity to visit the SUM to serve lunch to its guests. Our Senior Service Steward at the time, Emily Mordhorst (Class of 2008) heard about the experience and suggested that in order to get all students more genuinely involved in true service, visiting the Mission should become a regular part of the program at Southridge. The following September, it became a reality!
Since that time, in a typical year, an advisory group of Senior School students has dedicated a few hours each Friday to supporting the Surrey Urban Mission. Starting early in the morning, they meet in their advisory to prepare soup and sandwiches, and then later in the morning, travel by bus to the Mission to serve lunch to its guests. Our Junior students do their part too, assembling sandwiches (with the assistance of parent volunteers) on the Thursday afternoon prior to the visit, for the Seniors to bring with them the following day. The initiative is truly a ‘team-effort’ across the school.
Unfortunately this year, we have not been able to make our weekly visits to SUM as we traditionally do because of Covid restrictions. However, we do recognize that the Mission still needs our help to fill their shelves and support their guests. In addition to having parents volunteer to help us deliver a weekly bread contribution (in partnership with our friends from COBS BREAD), we’re also looking forward to having our entire community participate in a food drive next week to “Share what you CAN for SUM!”
We’re so thankful to have a caring community who recognizes the importance of service. Thanks in advance to everyone for their contributions – together, we CAN make a difference in the lives of others!
Contributed by Erin Labbé, Communications and Marketing