South Supports its Students Through the Eagle’s Share Closet

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Shree Delwadia

Lending a hand. South Forsyth creates the Eagle’s Share Closet as a space where students can access personal items that they may not have at home. This closet has supported many students within the school.

Before the start of the Pandemic, South Forsyth High School took action when the school’s staff saw some of its students were in need of some additional support.

SFHS Principal Ms. Laura Wilson worked with Mr. Naran Butler-Houck, the school’s dedicated social worker, to create a space known as the “Eagle’s Share Closest” to allow students to access some necessary supplies to help them throughout the day, or even at home. Principal Wilson, along with the rest of the faculty, hoped that this safe space would allow students to gain access to resources they do not have as well as understand that the school’s number one priority is to keep its students safe and secure.

Spreading support through service. Seniors Shree Delwadia, Rasagna Vuppala, Krithika Kasireddy, and Swetha Pendela organize their donations to the Eagle’s Share Closet. With the help of many clubs, this group was able to collect over three hundred hygiene and self-care items to further stock this closet for their peers. (Used with permission from Aditi Bang)

The Share Closet is a small room packed with essentials for students to use whenever they need. Donors stock the closet with items including drawstring bags, personal hygiene items, clothes, school supplies and more. 

Along with other faculty, Mr. Butler-Houck works endlessly to ensure this closet is full of essential supplies to support the needs of any student on campus.

 “The way it [Eagle’s Share Closet] works is that informal referrals come directly to me from anyone and anywhere,” he said.  “The referral source can be a counselor, staff member, student, or self-referred. I usually get referrals from word of mouth, but may also receive a call or email as well. I then reach out and follow-up with the student to explore their needs, and show them The Eagle’s Share Closet.”

To make sure they are not hesitant to receive help, these students are able to take whatever items they need in privacy. 

“Sometimes asking for help presents a barrier to access support, so I want to always make sure the process is as discreet and welcoming as possible,” said Mr. Butler. 

On some occasions, the Eagle’s Share Closet may not have a specific item or resource that a student needs. In this case, the school has partnered up with The Place of Forsyth to tackle this problem. This community organization helps students by making their needs more accessible, as it provides many resources and benefits in partnership with the school.

The Eagle’s Share Closet [fosters] a relational and fluid exchange of share and care.”

— Mr. Butler, SFHS Social Worker

Additionally, Mr. Butler works with social workers from all over Forsyth County to see how the Eagle’s Share Closet can aid students from other schools, and if other schools may have some items that our closet is in need of at the moment. Moreover, this closet is a community effort, as individuals work together to support the students of our school in any possible way.

Ultimately, the Eagle’s Share Closet is an essential location that brings warmth and support to the South’s community, enabling all the students to feel safe and welcomed as their personal needs and personal dignity are supported.