The Hamilton School Initiative was created based on the level of need within the student population and the neighborhood. Continuing its second year as a community school, Hamilton Elementary School’s mission is, “Engage. Educate. Empower.” They do this using responsive, collaborative care to create healthier youth and families.
The initiative empowers people of all ages to achieve personal growth, which looks different for everyone within a school setting. Hamilton is working to close the achievement and opportunity gap for children by working with parents within the community.
Hamilton’s environment and culture are welcoming. Inviting everyone in broadens the sense of community by making and strengthening relationships. These relationships create an opportunity for change. Everyone is encouraged to voice their ideas to achieve systemic changes that eliminate barriers and obstacles.
With a grant from the Women’s Fund, Hamilton School Initiative began a focus on middle and high school girls’ mental health and their connections to peers and adults in the summer of 2019. Young girls spanning from middle school to high school were invited to join staff and program partners to engage in a summer of self-development.
It was important to the to create an environment where girls felt comfortable, to let their guard down and talk openly about things going on around them, whether they are facing challenges at home, in school or with their peers. The Hamilton School Initiative girls program is also flexible, allowing at-risk youth to receive the mental health support they need when they need it.