A recent New York Times article, Schools That Work, highlighted two characteristics of schools who repeatedly achieve results they are aiming for: high expectations and high support. Agape North exists to help people thrive through giving, ultimately to provide schools with high support in order to help them achieve. We continue to be excited about the partnership that has developed between Regency Homebuilders and Cornerstone Preparatory Elementary School in Binghampton in Memphis. 

Blair Perry, Director of Campus Operations at Cornerstone Prep, has provided some reflections on their partnership with Regency:

Capstone Education Group operates two schools and educates over 750 students at our Lester Campus: Cornerstone Prep (Pre-K - 5) and Lester Prep (6-8). We consider ourselves fortunate for the opportunity we’ve been given to serve the students and families of Binghampton. Unfortunately, like most schools, we’ve been given an enormous task and limited resources with which to accomplish it. As a result, we rely heavily upon the help of volunteers who enable us to use more of our resources on direct supports to students in the desks. Simply said, we need great partners in order to be most successful in our work.

Admittedly, my first contact with Regency Homebuilders and Agape North came with a great deal of hesitation and reservation. I’d experienced “help” before from “partners” that proved to be more trouble than they were worth. I knew that the uniform donation would be great, but I expected their investment would stop shortly thereafter. Yet, Regency Homebuilders and Agape North have proved to be tremendous partners, time and time again. Before we even handed out any uniforms, the Regency staff plugged-in by sponsoring classrooms and providing a much-appreciated staff lunch. But the biggest help came when they brought their full staff on campus for a day of service.

Regency Homebuilders visits Cornerstone Prep for their first ever school uniform Giving Day. They were able to give back school shirts because they purchased company apparel through Agape North.

Regency Homebuilders visits Cornerstone Prep for their first ever school uniform Giving Day. They were able to give back school shirts because they purchased company apparel through Agape North.

For several hours on a Friday morning, the staff of Regency Homebuilders painted columns, swept out boiler rooms, planted flowers, installed door sweeps -- the list was enormous. Work that would’ve taken significant amounts of time, energy, effort, and (quite frankly) money were knocked out in just a few hours. Further, at the end of the day, they walked around campus with me asking for a wishlist of projects they could partner with us on accomplishing for years to come. We immediately began planning for another blitz this spring. What started as a simple uniform donation has become a beautiful partnership. Check out a short highlight video from the Regency Day of Service below!

This uniform donation served simply as a point of connection for a much greater and significant partnership. Regency Homebuilders and Agape North came to us, asked us what we needed, and partnered with us in filling the needs they were able to meet. Without a single doubt in my mind, because of the support provided by this partnership, Cornerstone and Lester Preps are better able to accomplish our mission of equipping students with the knowledge and wisdom needed to succeed in college and to become leaders in their community.

Blair Perry / Cornerstone Preparatory Elementary, Lester Campus