"Bridges to America," led by Priory students, works in St. Louis' immigrant community
On Saturday, Aug. 27, a Priory student-led organization, "Bridges to America," volunteered at the St. Louis Festival of Nations to help raise awareness for diversity and the refugee population in the area. The group, consisting of Elias Chahoud, Adrian Fedorko, Sohan Kancherla, Brian Koch, Frankie Kostecki, Anthony O'Sullivan, Brett Phelan, and Joe Shymanski, acted as market researchers, and polled the various festival-goes about their experiences with the refugee population in St. Louis, and how to increase awareness for the Festival of Nations for next year. Throughout the day, the group spent a total of five hours at the Festival interviewing spectators of all ages, and they collected more than 100 survey responses.
Junior Sohan Kancherla founded Bridges to America with the mission of raising awareness for and volunteering to help refugees and immigrants assimilating into American society. The group is partnered with the International Institute in St. Louis to help accomplish this goal. The group's main plans to achieve its mission are volunteering at large events to help raise awareness for the refugee population in St. Louis, and organizing food, clothing, and general fundraising drives with the proceeds going to purchase supplies for incoming refugees and immigrants. Bridges to America members are also volunteering as teacher's aides at the International Institute's citizenship and English classes. Also, the group helps to organize apartments for the incoming refugees, so that they feel welcome when they arrive at their new homes.
Any student who wants to become a part of Bridges to America to help improve the lives of refugees and immigrants in the St. Louis area, contact Sohan by e-mail.