Awareness Weekend Brings High School Community Together

Awareness Weekend Brings High School Community Together photo thumbnail143516

Amityville Memorial High School students strengthened their bonds with each other at Awareness Weekend in November, an annual tradition that includes a sleepover in the school. Warrior Awareness Club adviser Jason McGowan, who coordinated the event, said that 115 students participated in addition to 19 teachers and staff members. 

After bringing in their sleeping bags and suitcases following the end of the school day on Nov. 8, students gathered in the auditorium for opening remarks and the first of three guest presenters. Steven Prescod performed his inspirational one-man show. The following day, students welcomed tap dancer Carter Williams and Harlem Wizard basketball player Jack “Blackjack” Ryan.

Students were split into small family groups and participated in team-building activities throughout their 30-hour stay in the school, along with discussions led by the group facilitators.

There was also a student panel in which participants shared their difference experiences. The experience allowed students to get to know each other better and many left having formed new friendships. Several students said that the weekend was a transformative event filled with valuable life lessons, such as the importance of supporting each other. 

“Words can’t even express the love I felt at this event and how closer I felt with kids that I didn't even know before,” student Jamarie Henry said about her first time attending Awareness Weekend. “Those nights taught me a lot, which include not to judge someone because of their outside appearance, but what’s really inside their heart.”