The SEMIS Coalition facilitates school-community partnerships to develop students as citizen-stewards of healthy ecological-social systems. — SEMIS Mission Statement

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April 14 – 17, 2011
http://www.gysd.org

Students at Divine Child High School are teaming up with students from the Ann Arbor Learning Community (AALC) to partner in a co-mentoring place-based learning project with the Greening of Detroit , a community organization whose vision is to “ to guide and inspire others to create a ‘greener’ Detroit through planting and educational programs environmental leadership, advocacy, and by building community capacity” (http://www.greeningofdetroit.com/).

Students leaders from AALC and Divine Child were inspired by their experience in the Youth Day at the Great Lakes Bioneers Detroit conference. They decided that they should team up and design service projects that involve students of all ages, focusing on local stewardship as a core objective.

Great Lakes Bioneers Detroit, The Greening of Detroit and both schools are members of the Southeast Michigan Stewardship (SEMIS) Coalition. SEMIS facilitates school-community partnerships to create EcoJustice and place-based learning experiences which provide students the opportunity to act as citizen-stewards of their communities and the Great Lakes. SEMIS is one of seven state-wide hubs supported by the Great Lakes Stewardship Initiative (http://www.glstewardship.org/).

Both schools have curricula that already include a strong community-based education component. Now, students and teachers are teaming up to extend this learning to include a co-mentoring component. This Global Youth Service Day is a product of collaboration across SEMIS schools and among local community organizations. The tree planting project for the GYSD represents the continuation of sustained, student-planned service opportunities that connect intergenerational service-learning with work the students are doing in the classroom.

The students and volunteers will spend the day together planting trees in a Detroit neighborhood, working together in the community in hopes that they can generate excitement and commitment from youth to come up with a regular schedule for local students of all ages to collaborate with the Greening of Detroit Tree Planting program. The overall goal of the students’ efforts is to promote the idea that all youth can be involved as part of a larger local movement, rather than just a one-time service event.

For more information on this event or any of the related programs, please contact: info@semiscoalition.org.

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