SUN, After-school mentorship. Improving the lives of children, their families and the community


SUN - Schools Uniting Neighborhoods. Improving the lives of children, their families and the community. 27 community schools in North Clackamas and Multnomah County providing year-round mentorship in math, reading and enrichment. Info here!
SUN- Schools Uniting Neighborhoods. Year-round after-school mentorship in math, reading, science and more.

By Lee Orr, SUN Coordinator
HB Lee Middle School

The H.B. Lee MFS (Metropolitan Family Service) SUN (Schools Uniting Neighborhoods) Community School is one of 27 Community schools that MFS facilitates in North Clackamas and Multnomah County that provide year round extended day academic support and enrichment classes for almost 10,000 students every year. H.B. Lee serves over 350 students each week, of which 225 kids receive free meals and transportation. SUN academic classes include: Math and Reading Academy, Newcomer Academy (for ESL students,) Homework Club, and Study Center. The Newcomer Academy is supported by our partners at IRCO, who provide onsite, afterschool mentorship. We also feature Destination Imagination, a science challenge club offering students opportunities to hone their creative science skills as they tackle new team challenges each week.

Other classes provided offer leadership training, help with the transition to middle school, high school, college preparation, and adult education.

The I Have a Dream Foundation has been a valuable partner in supporting H.B. Lee and the “Dreamers” students who have set their sights on college and careers. IHD has been instrumental in meeting, planning and hosting college night events and bringing to our fold, Girl’s Inc., a leadership group aimed toward girls of all ethnicities and backgrounds; providing them a forum to discuss issues important to them. H.B. Lee is also the home of the WEB and Student Council who serve to provide leadership opportunities for matriculating 6th graders and 8th graders preparing to transition into high school. Other featured classes include orchestra club, film theatre, yoga, soccer, basketball, and ultimate frisbee.

For students seeking culturally specific activities, we offer the Latino Club facilitated by Catholic Charities, SRB (Sisters Reflecting Sisterhood) and BRB (Brothers Reflecting Brotherhood) through Self-Enhancement. Inc., and RISE facilitated by Pathways of Oregon. We expect to add the Slavic club, hosted by Impact NW, a class focused on the needs of Slavic kids and families in our community soon. Each of our culturally specific clubs provides students the opportunity to develop leadership skills, strong connections to their school, and community.

H.B. Lee’s MFS SUN Community School also offers adult evening classes that include: English as a Second Language on Thursday evenings and Abriendo Puertas (Opening Doors) an evening parenting class offered once a week for 2hrs in Spanish - with both classes running for 8 weeks. We also offer a cooking and nutrition class for adults, teaching parents how to prepare healthy food on a limited budget. On January 14th we held our inaugural Family Info Night event, offering families access to resources in the community as well as how to navigate their kids through grade transitions. We have other planned events soon to be announced.

H.B. Lee’s MFS SUN Community School is also supported by AmeriCorps. We feel it is important that youth experience nature outside the classroom. Our AmeriCorps volunteer leads our gardening class and nature walks to Nadaka Nature Park in partnership with St. Aiden’s Church, twice per week.

Although we have made some great strides, there is always more work to do. Our plan is to reach out to our local businesses for their continued support of our program. As our efforts intensify, we aim towards continually helping all people move beyond the limitations of poverty, inequity and social isolation – in short, we are “Moving Lives Forward.”

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