Sweetwater Students Help Malnourished Children, One Step at a Time

SWEETWATER, Texas (KTAB) - Some students in Sweetwater are helping malnourished children across the world, one step at a time. The UNICEF Kid Power Band Project is not only helping children in need, but helping these students as well.

Jenny Ordway is a 5th grade teacher at Sweetwater Intermediate School. After her class participated in Global Samaritan's Boxes of Food & Hope program, a desire to help others sparked.

"They were excited," Ordway said. "They wanted to send more boxes. They wanted to color more boxes. They wanted to know how they could help others."

It was these qeustions that inspired her to search for a project for her students to help kids around the world. Through a program she is involved in outside of school, Ordway found the UNICEF Kid Power Band Project.

"It counts your steps and it turns them in to points," student Jaden Adkins explained. "Five points is your daily goal, which is 12,000 steps. 24,000 steps is enough to feed one kid, which is 10 points."

Each day, the students learn about a new country that is struggling to feed children. They began their trip around the world on Wednesday by learning about Uganda. 

"It's more torn down than over here," Adkins said. "They have dirt roads and we have paved roads. They use fire pits instead of ovens like we do."

Not only is the Kid Power Band project helping kids around the world, it's helping these students choose a healthier lifestyle.

"In the past, I've always been sitting down watching tv," student Makenzie Ince said. "But, whenever I realize I need to be helping kids, I've been getting out an exercising a lot more."

"It just makes a warm feeling in your heart," student Seth Davis added. "It just makes you feel good and do more stuff to get active."

According to their teacher, it's changed their classroom environment as well.

"It's totally sparked an interest in them," Ordway said. "They're interested in helping others. They want to build a better classroom environment and actually help their classroom kids more. They'll hold each other accountable and ask each other, 'How many steps do you have?' And if someone needs more, they're like, 'Hey! You need to get stepping. We want to help people.'"

The project is proof that a difference can be made one step at a time.

The students say that they are getting competitive with the project by teaming up with boys against girls. The gym teacher, Carla Lambert, is also getting involved with the project. They hope to feed as many children as possible.

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