Serving in Saguache

By Laura Finley


2/11/19 - After making the ice cold trek to Mountain Valley School every morning, I start my day with approximately six hugs, one jumping hug, and one sassy comment from a second grader about his/her dinner last night, the state of the weather, or my general lack of ranching knowledge. We sit down for breakfast, and Ms. Hill asks us to “take care of each other”. After being a part of Alpine Achievers Initiative for the past four months, I can’t imagine a better start to my day, or a more applicable statement than “take care of each other”.

In Saguache, Colorado, taking care of one another means playing with a lonely kiddo on the playground. It means sharing snacks, and giving someone a hug when they look like they need it. At Mountain Valley though, it also means pushing our students to be the best they can be.

The MVS community expects the stars and the moon from their students, and they give everything they’ve got to help their students achieve said stars and moon. I’ve seen “cursed” board games that strengthen math skills without kids even noticing because it’s so fun. I’ve seen plant cycle cootie catchers, books written and illustrated by students, and the blood, sweat, and actual tears of both students and teachers giving 110% every single day. I was lucky enough to grow up in a household that expected a lot, but also gave an incredible amount of love. Being at Mountain Valley as part of AAI makes me feel like I’m at home. In a place where I, the students, the teachers, and the community are pushed and valued and loved. Walking home every night, I find myself absolutely exhausted. But walking out of that building to one final high five and a “what do YOU think you’re going to have for dinner?!?!” makes it all worth it. Taking care of each other makes it all worth it.

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