This year, the International Community School is celebrating the 30th anniversary of their annual Food Fair. Being Chair of the school’s Parents Staff Association (PSA) organizing this event, Susmita Dastidar gave us more insight about their successful fair and what return to the local community the school contributes in. Each year, parents of the students help out organizing this massive event at ICS. “We have 56 nationalities from around the world and we are expecting a more successful event than ever before,” Susmita said. Behind the word ‘food’ lays a commitment towards the local community of the school’s current location in Na’our and the students of the school itself. A part of the funds collected during the fair are used wisely to fulfill the school’s wish list. “Thanks to the fair, the school last year was able to buy weather instruments and equipment to assist the students in their science projects and the application of what they theoretically study in their classes.” Susmita added.
A large part, over 40% of the income goes towards charitable activities. Throughout the 30 years of the food fair, ICS had been contributing to the local community. Since their move to the new school, it has been concentrated in Na’our. “Our students are engaged in a 3 -4 months community service in rotation, where students are always participating in helping out the community around our school.” Scheduled weekly activities that are done on regular basis help the students of the school gain more awareness of the community they live in and allow them be part of it. “For example, last year, combined efforts of the school’s maintenance team, PSA and the students of community service team helped in renovating several houses, one for an in-need widowed mother with daughters. Handing the mother the key to her new door, providing safety and security for the family was an unforgettable moment!” Susmita added. ICS, with the help of their food fair fund has been organizing charitable activities such as iftars during the holy month of Ramadan, and most importantly, adopting schools in the area to enhance their facilities like classroom equipment and play grounds. Just few weeks back, the school helped establishing a playground for the handicapped children in Sayedat Al Salam Foundation, where ICS students visit every week to contribute their time and effort to draw the smile on the children of that foundation.
Susmita was pleased to inform me that last year, they have started a new initiative by getting several students from different public schools in Na’our to be involved in the ICS summer camp, whereas this year, she hopes to increase the number of kids involved in the camp. “It was a successful start, both our students and the kids from the public schools were excited about the initiative, after all, it is for mutual benefit.” They also provide Tawjihi fee for deserving students in the local schools. This year, the ICS is taking it bigger, and the school’s PSA including Susmita are very excited for this year’s food fair. “We will have American, a variety of European, Far Eastern and South Asian as well as local cuisines. It’s a day for the whole family.” With areas for children and adults, bouncing castles, live radio broadcast hosted by Rob Stevens, their M.C for the 8th year in a row, music and dance live performances and the food from all around the world, the ICS food fair is a not-to-miss event of this year.