GEO Club: Giving back to those in need


Jessica Joachim

Magnet senior Ana Barahona started the Global Education Outreach club (GEO) in an effort to help children in developing countries. As her first project, she set out to collect gently used clothing to bring to Honduras. Barahona hopes to make a difference in their communities. “I feel a deep connection to GEO because it started from a personal project of mine. I decided about two months ago that I want to celebrate my 18th birthday in a different way after I saw a family friend do so. I wanted to give back,” Barahona said.

Jessica Joachim, News Editor

With every trip to Costa Rica and other Latin American countries, the NC Magnet program visits a school. Students frequently reference the visits as insightful, even creating bonds with children at the schools. Upon visiting Honduras, senior Magnet student Ana Barahona planned with Magnet coordinator, James Auld to created the Global Education Outreach Club (GEO). Barahona felt a personal connection to the club, with familial ties to her home country. 

The club, which mainly attracts Magnet students, met in the Magnet lounge on October 3 to discuss their upcoming clothing drive. 

“The purpose of GEO is to reach out to countries that our International Studies students have connections with. Whether the connection comes from family, mission trips, vacations, etc, we want to encourage students to give back whenever and wherever. GEO is meant to provide students who are traveling to a developing country with the opportunity to simply help. Our main goal is to collect clothes, school supplies and other resources for students in third world countries,” Barahona said.

Members spoke in Magnet homerooms to inform students of the event to help children in developing countries.

“Our goal for this drive is to collect as many clothes as possible. We currently have two upcoming projects in the spring of 2020. Both projects will provide clothes and school supplies to schools in Central America. Donations will specifically go to an underprivileged school in Costa Rica during the annual freshman trip and the other will go to a special needs school in Honduras with me. While the Costa Rican school only has around 30 children, the Honduran school has 150, meaning every donation is important to us,” Barahona said.

As the club’s first event of the year, the GEO club decided on a clothing drive to help donate gently used clothing of all sizes and types to those in need. President Ana Barahona hopes to gather multiple articles of clothing for her trip to Honduras during spring break. 

The club asked members to bring in plastic bins to help store the clothes. 

To help, students can drop off clothes in between the nurse’s office and outside Admin 1 or the Magnet lounge whenever available. 

“Please consider cleaning out your closet. Gently used clothes and shoes of any size (from newborn to adult) are welcome. We would love to provide every child with an article or two of clothing,” Barahona said.

The success of the event inspired Barahona to extend the clothing drive to Friday to encourage more students to donate. 

“I feel extremely grateful. In one week we collected way over 20 bags full of clothing and shoes of all different sizes. I was truly shocked by the amount of donations and support from all my peers. It was even more exciting to see all the requests to extend the drive, it is truly heartwarming to see a community that is willing to contribute to such an amazing cause,” Barahona said.