A Little Compassion Goes a Long Way

A Little Compassion Goes a Long Way photo
A Little Compassion Goes a Long Way photo 2
Hampton Bays High School students are working together to cultivate unity and empathy within their school through Compassion Week, which kicked off on March 5.

The week commenced with a powerful assembly led by Jared Scott of Teen Truth, who promoted the idea that solutions to problems within a school must come from the students. 

“You are the source of change,” he told them.  

Following the assembly, 60 students took part in an ambassador workshop with Scott. The students, selected for participation by their teachers, were trained in developing their natural leadership skills and abilities through a series of group and individual activities, and were challenged to make a real difference within their school. 

The week continued with schoolwide activities, including a volunteer-a-thon and a kindness challenge. Students also began work on an art project that will send a message of hope, love and support to the students and staff at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. 

Compassion Week was planned and coordinated by the high school student council and initiated by freshman Tara Lauther, who brought the idea to the school after attending a Compassion Without Borders workshop in November. 

“I felt we needed to bring more empathy and compassion into our school,” said Lauther, who is also a member of her school’s Key Club, Leos Club and Gay-Straight Alliance. 

While she started planning Compassion Week in January, Lauther said her resolve became stronger after the horrific tragedy at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, where her best friend, Gina Montalto, was killed. Lauther and Montalto had met when Lauther was living in Florida. 

“She was always smiling,” Lauther said. “That’s how we became friends.”