Scottsdale school hosts food drive to aid underprivileged children

CFA principal Jevon Lewis and ISA Communications Coordinator Brittany McGonagle unpack donations.

CFA principal Jevon Lewis and ISA Communications Coordinator Brittany McGonagle unpack donations.

International School of Arizona conducted a food drive March 25 to benefit underprivileged children in Arizona, marking the third in a series of drives ISA is holding for Children First this school year.

ISA has designated Children First as beneficiary for all of its charitable acts in the 2014-15 academic year. Earlier ISA held a drive to collect back-to-school supplies and a second drive to collect more than $1,500 worth of coins for Children First.

As with the earlier efforts, proceeds from the food drive will directly benefit Children First students, many of whose families are poor and homeless.

“Children First Academy is doing a remarkable job helping students in need,” said Veronique Bevali, curriculum director of ISA. “We are happy to be able to help them in any way we can.”

Children First, formerly the Thomas J. Pappas School, was founded in 1990 and has been a beacon for disadvantaged Arizona children ever since.

All of its roughly 300 students come from families living at or below the poverty line, and the vast majority of its students are homeless.

The academy, which moved from improvised space at a former car dealership to a purpose-built campus in 2013, now runs from kindergarten through eighth grade.

It offers students resources for health and dental care, food and clothing, and in many cases free transportation from homeless shelters or temporary housing. For students whose home life may be unsettled or chaotic, Children First provides a stable and safe place to grow and learn during the week.

ISA is already planning a fourth drive to benefit Children First. Students and families will donate socks and undergarments April 9-23. The drive is open to the public. Donations are welcome at either ISA campus.

The International School of Arizona is a private, nonprofit preschool, primary and middle school offering full immersion tracks in French and Spanish.

Founded in 1997, ISA’s mission is to give children in the Phoenix metropolitan area the opportunity to obtain a world-class foreign-language education in a multicultural setting. The school is accredited by American and European entities: AdvancED, Agence pour l’Enseignement Française á l’Etranger (AEFE) and Instituto Cervantes.

The school’s main campus is at 9128 E. San Salvador Drive, Scottsdale. A satellite campus is at 11211 E. Via Linda Lane, Ste. 100, Scottsdale.

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