US students receive PIN Community Service Award

Juniors Talia Frumkin and Maya Bitton were awarded with a Parents’ Independent School Network Community Service Award for their work on the BVR Accelerator session Streets to Stability: A Future Without Homelessness. The session–the only one to be planned and hosted by students–provided students with an opportunity to learn about homelessness, participate in meaningful community service work, and meet with legislators about homelessness in Boston.

Going into this project, we weren’t expecting to get so much out of it, especially this recognition. We didn’t do this to be recognized, but it was nice to be seen on a community level.

-Talia Frumkin ’25

To accept the award, Frumkin and Bitton attended a zoom ceremony hosted by the Parents’ Independent School Network. “It was very nerve-wracking,”  Bitton mentions. “We’ve presented about this so many times, but it’s all been within the Beaver community. This felt like a much broader audience and we wanted to accurately communicate the work we put in.” The duo shared how the entire project started as a simple inquiry into homelessness. From there, they started to work on a Student Directed Project on the topic, which served as the inspiration for the BVR Accelerator course.

We were shocked (in a good way) at how many people on campus recognized the award. Our English teacher and tennis coach made comments to us; we were very shocked but it was nice to see how proud our teachers were.

-Maya Bitton ’25

When reflecting on the experience, Frumkin and Bitton mention different obstacles that proved to be the hardest. For Frumkin, the workload of planning an Accelerator session was the most challenging; “all of the meetings we had with people in school and outside organizations was more time-consuming than we ever imagined. Balancing that with our normal student workload was tricky.” For Bitton, the biggest challenge was finding the right approach; “when tackling an issue that can be so deeply personal, you want to address it in a way that isn’t offensive. Finding ways to be respectful through the whole process was important.” 

Looking ahead, Frumkin and Bitton hope to continue their work regarding homelessness, even after graduation.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *