6th grade students raise over $5,000 for school in Tanzania

Published: Jun. 16, 2023 at 6:03 PM EDT
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GUILFORD, Maine (WABI) - Back in November, we brought you the story of the Pirate Portal, a 360 classroom at Piscataquis Community Elementary School that hoped to help connect students with others from around the world.

Now, in June, the Pirate Portal served as a meeting place between students in Guilford and Tanzania.

This wasn’t just any ordinary meet and greet. It was the opportunity to speak to a handful of kids just like them that they’ve worked for months to help.

“You know, this actually started last year when I challenged the sixth graders to make a difference. I really wanted students to see that they have a lot of power to do good, and that there were a lot of problems that they could really help with in the world,” said Principal Anita Wright

“The students got together and decided that Tanzania would be a really worthy project. I am so very proud of all of them. They reach their goal, they put their hearts into it,” said Wright.

Students worked to raise money to help a school over 7,000 miles away purchase windows, doors, and furniture.

“We did a bake sale. We did a carnival. It took us about a couple months to reach our goal of $4,000, but we were able to overachieve that goal,” said student Mya Knight.

Thanks in part to a donation from Foxcroft Academy, they raised over $5,000.

“It was fun because I knew we were helping people that didn’t have as much as we had,” said student Hayden Hunt.

“We helped people across the world that we didn’t even know pretty much existed, so we’ve felt really good to help somebody in need,” said Knight.

On Friday, they got the opportunity to talk to some of the students through a video call.

“It was really cool. I didn’t think I was going to talk, going to be able to talk to anybody. I waved to one of them, and they waved right back, and it was really cool,” Knight said.

While the students may never visit the school they’ve helped, the lessons of this project will carry with them.

“If you like set your mind to something, you can definitely achieve it because when I first heard about it, I was like there’s no way we can do this. And then, here we are with like over $5,000. It’s just super cool to think that we overachieved our goal when I didn’t really think we could, so you can, you can do whatever you set your mind to, which is really cool,” said student Savannah Cates.