Cultivating a sense of social responsibility, care and compassion for our greater community is a guiding tenet of Waldorf education. Specifically, Waldorf schools foster development so that, throughout life, students are motivated to serve humanity with strength of will, depth of feeling, clarity of thought, and the ability to work with others.
This is why we are always proud, but never surprised, to see our students and alumni out in the world doing good. Recently, current Waldorf students have been in the news for their part both in helping during the COVID-19 pandemic and working to better our environment.
The LA Times recently did a story on Waldorf School of Orange County Junior, Lauren O'neill, who has created a nonprofit necklace brand, Hooves and Hope, with 100% of all sales going to U.S. COVID-19 hunger relief.
The LA Times reports: “This is not O’Neill’s first project dedicated to helping her community. During her freshman year, she and her sister Kaitylyn started a nonprofit called Arte Para el Alma (which translates to “art for the soul”), where they recruited fellow student council members at Waldorf to teach art classes to at-risk youth in Orange County.”
Long Island paper, Newsday.com, recently featured Sanaalee Troupe, a sophomore at the Waldorf School of Garden City, and the founder of the Cleaner Oceans Institute -- a non-profit focusing on helping the environment by disseminating knowledge at the local, national and global levels. The institute has 57 members from countries as far away as China.
"It not only teaches you about environmental issues, but you're part of a community of environmentalists who have different interests," Troupe, 17, said of the institute's importance. "We all unite under the bridge of being environmentalists."
Three seniors soon to graduate have also been in the news this year for their environmental work.
Marlow Baines, graduating senior at The Shining Mountain Waldorf School in Colorado, is the Colorado Youth Director of Earth Guardians, and received much news coverage, such as this story in the Denverite, while co-facilitating Denver’s 2019 Climate event with Greta Thurnberg.
Two graduating seniors at the Sacramento Waldorf School, Tyler Cochran-Branson and Riley Day, appeared on Good Day Sacramento for striving to make their high school zero waste this May and beginning the school’s composting program.
In her appearance on Good Day Sacramento, Tyler said: “For people our age, it’s hard not to hear about these issues. This is a very conscious community. Protecting the environment and the climate is an issue that affects every person on earth right now, and it affects us and our future so deeply. It’s impossible for us not to know about it and impossible to not do anything.”
- Public Policy