Just two weeks after 15 students and two educators were tragically killed in a shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, students in the El Paso Independent School District are doing everything they can to help survivors cope.
One of those students is Franklin High School Junior Abigail Cazier, who has spearheaded a letter writing campaign among other EPISD students in order to show support and hopefully bring solace to the students and families in Parkland.
“It’s important to reach out because they are just like us. They are our peers, and it could have just as easily happened here,” Cazier said. “They are going through something awful that no one should have to go through.”
Cazier said the letters may seem insignificant, but she hopes they have a powerful impact among those students who lived through the unthinkable tragedy.
“I think just letting them know we stand with them, and that we are here to support them even though we live far away is important,” she said.
With the help of her friends Maura Moreno and Priscilla Miguel, she has already collected more than 30 letters from her school. She hopes to collect many more in the coming weeks.
“I was originally just going to ask my English teacher if we could write letters, but I thought ‘why stop there? There’s so many students,’” she said. “We can offer so much if we did it as District and send thousands of notes of support and comfort.”
Cazier is encouraging students from all EPISD schools to take ten minutes of their day to write a heartfelt letter and then turn it into their front office. The letters could be sent to Franklin High School from any EPISD school using school mail.
“Just write from the heart,” she said. “I would offer words of comfort and words to let them know they are not alone.”
Letters will be collected until a week after spring break and then sent to a teacher in Florida who has been collecting hand-written notes from throughout the country.
“We are trying to get as many letters as possible to send from El Paso with love from our community,” she said. “As students, we need a chance to get involved. We need to let our voices be heard. We need to make a change.”