When Winnie Wins, We All Do


April Anderson

Complete volunteer hours to help support Winnie!

Madelyn Stumbo, Website Editor

Children with medical conditions can require a lot of money, time, and care, to help them succeed and receive the proper medical treatment. To help support these children, Barlow partners with business sponsors to raise money to help one specific child every year, our Sparrow. A sparrow bird is resilient and symbolizes community and teamwork. We can work together as a school to support our Sparrow in receiving the necessary treatment. 

This year’s Sparrow, Winnie, is a six-year-old girl who loves water parks, books, being outdoors, and Moana. She has a little brother named Emmet who loves Paw Patrol.  

She is a daredevil who loves to bounce, swing, and go fast! She loves things most young kids do!” exclaims her profile on sparrowclubs.com. 

Winnie was diagnosed with cerebral palsy and epilepsy, which can scramble the messages going to her brain and can make it difficult for her to understand what she is seeing and hearing. When she was little, her parents realized she wasn’t developing like other kids, and she wasn’t meeting milestones like sitting up and rolling over. Her life is full of occupational, physical, and speech therapy. 

As a school, we can help Winnie and her family by volunteering. “Through our volunteering efforts within the community, we can unlock funds that are paid by a sponsor that goes directly to the sparrow and her family, to help cover things like medical costs and physical therapy,” explains April Anderson, the activities director and teacher at Barlow. For every hour of community service a student completes, ten dollars is given to support Winnie.

 Students have until the end of the semester to complete their hours and turn them in via the QR code located around the school, on social media, and in the Bruin Banner.  There is a cap of 300 hours, and once that is reached, Barlow is looking into possible additional fundraisers to contribute even further. 

Getting involved in community service and volunteering is simpler than you might think. There are countless ways to make a difference, whether it be through donating your time at a local charity event or spreading positivity with small acts of kindness like sending a card or creating a painted rock. With so many opportunities available, finding a way to give back to your community can be easy and accessible, regardless of your skills, interests, or schedule.

“It can be something as simple as you going and helping your elderly neighbor who needs yard work done… or if you (want) more of a structured community service thing, the humane society is always looking for volunteers,” comments Anderson.  A list of local volunteer opportunities can be found on the Gresham-Barlow school district website, or linked on the Bruin Banner website. 

The Sparrow program provides a very unique opportunity to not only help out Winnie and her family but to also help our communities and make a difference in our neighborhoods. This double benefit lets us help two causes for the price of one. 

Once we’ve reached the cap for volunteering, there are still opportunities to continue supporting Winnie. Barlow has begun brainstorming ideas for other fundraisers, if you have any comments or suggestions for fundraising, feel free to speak to Mrs. Anderson, and look out for any future fundraisers during your lunch!

Our efforts can make caring for Winnie a lot easier with the extra financial support. Thank you to everyone who has already volunteered their time towards helping Winnie. If you haven’t volunteered yet, it’s not too late! Every hour of volunteering can make a meaningful impact on Winnie and her family’s journey. Let’s continue to come together as a community and support them in any way we can.

Volunteer Opportunities – Google Sheets