BGEC Civics students tour Camillus House

Wednesday, January 3, 2018 0 Comments

BGEC Civics students tour Camillus House

Students from the Civics Engagement Academy (CEA) at Bob Graham Education Center continue meeting with community leaders throughout the state to learn about how governments, non-profits and other community organizations are run.

In mid-November, the students were hosted by Camillus House CEO Hilda Fernandez, a Miami Lakes resident, on a site visit to one of the Camillus House campuses to learn about the mission and work of that organization.

Camillus House is a non-profit agency serving the poor and homeless in the community. It has grown steadily over the years from a small soup kitchen into a full-service center offering a comprehensive “system of care” for the poor and homeless – a seamless step-by-step process designed to bring persons from a life on the streets back to permanent housing.

In addition to hearing from Fernandez, the students also met with other staff members and toured the facilities to learn about the organization’s operations.

“I was very impressed by the questions and level of interest of the students in learning how community organizations contribute in making our communities even better places to live,” Fernandez said.

These opportunities to meet with leaders enhances what the students learn about as part of their academic program. “When our students hear directly from the individuals who make things happen, it brings to life what we read about and discuss in our classes and provides our students with invaluable real life lessons,” said CEA teacher Jackeline Hernandez.

The Camillus site visit, along with others the students have made during the past year, was organized by the Bobcat Law Society, the booster group which assists the CEA teachers. Students have traveled to Tallahassee to meet with State Senators, Representatives, Legislative staff and lobbyists to learn about the state legislative process.

They have met with Senator Bob Graham along with the Miami Lakes Town Council to learn about the federal and local levels of government.

“The CEA continuously tries to follow the advice given by Graham regarding civics education by creating as many opportunities for the students to personally connect with their government and community organizations in dynamic and interactive ways,” said Ramiro Inguanzo, president of the Bobcat Law Society parent booster club.

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