Building and Strengthening Neighborhoods and People

Making Connections: Success Academy and Charles Village

By John Bernet, GHCC Community Connections Coordinator/AmeriCorps VISTA

On Saturday, March 22nd, students from Success Academy in Baltimore City came out for a volunteer clean-up day at St. John’s United Methodist Church on the corner of 26th and St. Paul Street. Over the course of two very productive hours, they cleaned out the garden and trimmed back the ivy along the front of the building and raked the side yards, making it look beautiful just in time for Spring to begin! They were joined by Pam and Christian Wilson from the Peabody Heights Resident Homeowners Alliance and Mrs. Carol Berman from the St. John’s congregation, all of whom helped to coordinate the effort with Success Academy Principal Kevin Brooks. Following their time working outside, the students got a tour of the building and a run-down of all the wonderful services and programs the church provides. This was the first day of a two-part project, the second to occur around the week of Earth Day. Thanks to all the great students from Success Academy who participated, and the Wilsons and Mrs. Berman for providing lunch and an opportunity to see and learn about a very active local church! This volunteer effort also marks the beginning of an active partnership between Success Academy and the surrounding communities that will see lots of volunteer and enrichment opportunities for the students. Success Academy, an alternative school for city students on long-term suspension and expulsion, is located on the ground floor of Baltimore City Schools headquarters at 200 E. North Avenue.