Where There's Hope...

You hear the name Hope Club, and you just know lovely things are coming from this group of high school students. And with a $500 grant from Scottsdale LunchboxWax, the goodness will be focused squarely on Avis Lighthouse Shelter, an orphanage for Native American Youth in Phoenix, Arizona.

Tesseract Upper School in Scottsdale, Arizona, is the home of this club of 31 benevolent high schoolers. Led by high school senior Caroline Fabricius-Ahlgreen and teacher Jason Leonard, this think-globally-act-locally student organization spurs students to connect to the outside community through service-oriented activities.

“Hope Club is lending both a hand and a heart to the Avis Lighthouse Shelter by acting as a new support system and as role models for the children who have never had much stability in their young lives,” said Fabricius-Ahlgreen.

With the support of LunchboxWax, Hope Club will be establishing an engaging relationship with the Avis Lighthouse Shelter. Over the course of they year, they’ll dedicate their time, energy and hearts to helping this safe haven.

Most Mondays, a selection of Hope Club members will visit the shelter after school to help the children organize their homework and schedules for the week ahead, as well as tutor them in any subjects with which they may be struggling in.

And even more, they’ll just be friends with these kids.

“We can’t wait to host game nights and take them trick-or-treating or just do other fun things that are what being a child is all about,” Fabricius-Ahlgreen said.

With help from LunchboxWax and other members of the community, Hope Club also will focus on assisting with home improvements, building a garden that the young residents can maintain, spearhead a “Rummage Sale” to organize the shelter’s garage, and host the annual charity concert that raises additional funds to give the shelter’s residents holiday gifts.

“Supporting our community is paramount to us. We’ve seen the tremendous work Avis does with so little, and we were inspired to help them any way we can,” said Scottsdale LunchboxWax franchise owner Lisa D’Onofrio, who enjoyed a 7-year career at Tesseract School as middle- and high-school nurse before opening LunchboxWax with Sharon Buell and Scott Salk. “We’re so excited to see what Hope Club can do with our grant. They’re creative, compassionate students who have the chance to see firsthand how kindness and courage can change the world. I get goosebumps thinking about the positive experiences that are on the horizon.”