Is Breakthrough Getting Through?


Breakthrough Miami, (housed on campus), is looking for supplies.Yet, even though MCDS encourages the community to contribute to non-profit organizations, barely anyone knows about Breakthrough and its needs. “They are looking for students to donate snacks,” says Ms. Sennett, Community Service Advisor, “and so far they have nothing. No one has brought anything. Why that isn’t successful, I don’t know.”

Despite what Ms. Sennett thinks, it is not entirely correct. “We’ve only received a few donations…making our presence known on campus is kind of difficult.” says Kenneth Garrett, Associate Site Director here for Breakthrough Miami. Even though there are multiple flyers around, their effect has been minimal. Mr. Garrett who has been at his position since March of 2016 says that this is not Breakthrough Miami’s first unsuccessful drive on campus. “I’ll say the reason is cause a lot of people don’t want to hear it, a lot of people aren’t really too big on giving back, so when it comes to the aspect of it, it’s just something that just sways in the breeze instead of a lot of people taking action.” Garrett believes that the word is not getting out because people have their priorities, whether they are donating to other drives, or do not want to donate.

  Breakthrough is only one of the multiple organizations currently holding drives, so are all receiving minimal results? Por Los Ninos has been very successful with their first drive on campus.  “We have been able to attend to two schools already that are in need,” says Junior Isabella Ballesteros, who is responsible for organizing the drive. In just 12 days, Ballesteros was able to collect a significant amount of school supplies for her drive.



                From the results of her drive, and considering past results, faculty believe that getting the word out is essential to having a successful drive. “In the past, I have seen drives that are successful, and other ones that are not so much. What I think really makes the difference, is word of mouth among students, among peers, it seems to me that they listen and hear much more from peers, than from teachers or the faculty and staff, urging them to bring things for supplies even if it is more easy service hours, but the most successful drives are the ones that are most heavily promoted by students,” said by upper school teacher Ms. Martinez whose room is being used as a drop off location. The Breakthrough drives are not getting the word out.“It’s something that happens on campus twice a month and nobody knows about it, it’s crazy they need to get the word out.” says Ms. Sennett.

Although drives that are talked about from student to student help bring in donations, drives that people care about also tend receive donations. “I think students feel more inclined to donate to something that they probably want to help change.” says Ms. Annette Fulton, Founder of Young People of Distinction.  “In society, don’t we need people to donate? The American Cancer society would never be successful if no one donated any money right? Susan G Komen, our cancer walk people tend to donate to things that are important to them.”

Although Breakthrough is a non profit organization that serves underprivileged students throughout Miami Dade County with a headquarters on campus, Sennett adds “kids don’t know what Breakthrough is.”  BreakThrough is greatly cared about around the globe receiving thousands of donations to help now over 6,000 children and adults. The Breakthrough office is found in the administration center, Primary Hall,  and is open to questions, donations and information.