Beyond School Saftey:
Nature & Community As Healer

Mt. Lemmon – As a result of the critical discussion on school safety, the federal government has released Title IV funds to “support programs that prevent violence in and around schools; that prevent the illegal use of alcohol, tobacco, and drugs; that involve parents and communities; and that are coordinated with related Federal, State, school, and community efforts and resources to foster a safe and drug-free learning environment that supports student academic achievement.”

Changemaker High School accessed these funds and put in place a health and wellness program. Through this program we have been able to provide counseling, critical conversations, access to nature, and exercise options. We believe that developing authentic relationships with out students through love, respect, and support comes first.

A Day Trip to Mt. Lemmon:
Accessing Nature & Her Healing Properties

Nature can do wonders for our mental health, so if you have neglected your time with Earth lately, consider these 5 remarkable ways that nature heals:






Climate, Jobs, & Justice @ Changemaker

In response to the call to action by the numerous global rallies and marches for the Rise for Climate, Jobs, and Justice in September of 2018, Changemaker High School hosted a community screening and discussion of Before the Flood.

Students hosted a community Climate Justice event where participants engaged with student speakers, demonstrations,tours of Changemaker High School’s implementation of features to improve climate resilience both on and off campus. This led to students planning our premier of I Care Earth Care Storytelling, which took place in combination with our annualstudent-led community Children’s Day and Earth Day celebrations.

Before the Flood Film Screening and Discussion

From Academy Award®-winning filmmaker Fisher Stevens and Academy Award-winning actor, environmental activist and U.N. Messenger of Peace Leonardo DiCaprio, Before the Flood presents a riveting account of the dramatic changes now occurring around the world due to climate change, as well as the actions we as individuals and as a soci- ety can take to prevent catastrophic disruption of life on our planet. The film follows DiCaprio as he travels to five continents and the Arctic speaking to scientists, world leaders, activists and local residents to gain a deeper understanding of this complex issue and investigate concrete solutions to the most pressing environmental challenge of our time.

The University of Arizona College of Education worked with Changemaker High School on a project designed to raise awareness of cyber-bullying and promote the spread of kindness online. This unique international project promoted collaboration between high school students from a province in Japan and from Changemaker to create strategies to combat cyber-bullying that could be adopted in both cultures. Ben’s Bells, a Tucson non-profit devoted to kindness education, was the inspiration for the Arizona students’ work. Teams visited each other’s country to inform their collaborative effort through a cultural exchange.

Changemakers Travel to Japan

Ten students from Changemaker High School in Tucson are part of an international project to prevent cyberbullying. The high schoolers are focused on how to be kind online, said teacher Oscar Medina. In June they traveled to Japan to attend conferences and share ideas with other students. The Changemaker students had to apply for the project that’s formally called Arizona-Kansai Cyberbullying Prevention.

Every week the high schoolers met with students from the University of Arizona. They discuss ways they can reach out to their peers, teachers and parents.

KGUN9 spoke to a number of the Changemaker students who say Instagram and Snapchat tend to be the most popular ways to communicate. They say they often feel pressure to connect with people on social media and talked to us about how cyberbullying happens among teens.

Changemaker students have been able to video chat with students in Japan and that will continue throughout the year long project. It’s being funded in part by the U.S. Department of State and Osaka Kyoiku University.

Ben’s Bells is also involved with the kindness campaign. Executive Director and Ben’s mom Jeannette Maré says once the students come up with their program the non-profit will distribute it to hundreds of schools in Southern Arizona and across the country.

Changemaker is part of the Ben’s Bells free Kind Campus program that educates campuses about the benefits of kindness.

Changemakers In Takanosu, Chikusa, Shiso

Changemaker Students Host Students from Japan

Arizona-Kansai Cyberbullying Prevention Project In the News

S.W.A.N Wash Bridge Project

Changemaker High School students undertook a class project for “Make A Difference Day” addressing serious flooding problems. Students recommended a simple wooden footbridge that evolved into a sophisticated concrete bridge engineered by Kimley Horne and Associates, then installed by Granite Construction. With assistance from their science teacher and The Living Street Alliance, students organized a community campaign to obtain support from neighbors, City Council Member Richard Fim and County Supervisor Ramon Valadez.

The students developed a formal funding request for consideration by the Pima County Neighborhood Reinvestment Oversight Committee who recommended Neighborhood Reinvestment (NR) bond funding in the amount of $229,000 to the Board of Supervisors. They approved funding on April 5, 2016. Design and construction were completed within eight months (March 2017-November 2017).

In addition to a pedestrian bridge, the project included 500 feet of new sidewalks, a speed table crossing, water-harvesting basins in Swan Park, plus post and cabling to stop off-road vehicle traffic. Trees for Tucson will install dozens of trees in Swan Park to help mitigate erosion by flooding. Students learned valuable lessons about reciprocal relationships between citizens and government, public speaking and public policy.

While NR projects are typically designed and constructed by the City of Tucson, the county provided project management services to ensure this particular project would be completed during the 2017-18 fiscal year. Working with both city transportation and parks departments on design, the water harvesting basins were relocated from Belvedere Street into Swan Wash Park to take advantage of the water retention. As with all other NR projects, the City will maintain this project over a period of 25 years as required by the Intergovernmental Agreement.

The project addressed both drainage issues and safe routes to school benefitting an economically disadvantaged neighborhood. It also met master plan objectives of the Swan Park Plan. Over 1,000 residents live in the neighborhood where many local students attend (and walk local streets to) the Changemaker and Roberts- Naylor Schools.

S.W.A.N Wash Bridge Dedication

S.W.A.N. Wash Bridge Project in the News

From Concept to Design to Construction