News from Synergy School
At 7 AM on a chilly Friday morning, Synergy kids and teachers were already at school, firing up griddles and mixing batter. Soon, the homey smell of pancakes and maple syrup filled the school as hungry kids, parents, and teachers lined up for breakfast.
The POCIS&F (People of Color in Independent Schools & Friends) Pancake Breakfast is a Synergy tradition. Each year the group raises money for a different cause. Past year’s donations have gone to Flip Flops for Families, One Warm Coat, and other groups.
This year the breakfast will benefit families who lost their homes in the four-alarm fire that ravaged a three-story building in the Mission. The January fire left one man dead; more than 40 residents lost their homes. A number of small businesses in the building were also displaced.
“Earlier this year we discussed the concept of community,” said teacher Rita Franklin, who coordinates POCIS&F. “Then this fire happened right in our own community. Some of the kids know families who lost their homes, and it was a cause they really wanted to support.”
Synergy parent Ethel Guevara knows a woman who lived in the Mission Street building for a decade. According to Guevara, the woman lost everything in the fire. Now she and her two children are staying with her sister in an overcrowded apartment. “She’s been looking for an apartment, but she works in a laundromat,” said Guevara. “She can’t pay the rents they are asking now. She doesn’t know what she is going to do.”
Synergy 8th grader Gina Meyer talked about the fire as she flipped pancakes. “The families lost their homes and don’t have anywhere to go,” she said. “We wanted to help.”
This year’s breakfast turned out to be one of the most successful ever, raising $700. Along with a benefit movie and snack event organized by middle schoolers, Synergy students raised a total of $825 for the Mission Fire Victims Fund.
(If you want to help victims of the Mission Fire, send donations to the Mission Economic Development Agency (MEDA). Cash/checks should be made out to “MEDA – Mission Fire Victims Fund” and delivered/mailed to MEDA at 2301 Mission Street, Suite 301, c/o Andrew Bowles, San Francisco, CA 94110. Learn more here.)
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