Group hopes to inspire others to make a difference

Andra Belknap, Ojai Valley News reporter

A group of friends met for lunch at Casa de Lago in Ojai one afternoon in 2015, and an idea to inspire the community to volunteer in local schools was born.

According to Fawn Parish, she and her friends began chatting to a group of young people about what students in Ojai need to succeed. The response was immediate, said Parish, “they said they needed mentoring.”

Since then, the four women have spent the past 18 months meeting with each Ojai Unified School District (OUSD) principal and OUSD Superintendent Hank Bangser.

According to the women, they learned many local students have few caring, non-school-related adults in their lives. This, they said, has significant community-wide negative outcomes.

That's why the women hope at least 500 Ojai Valley residents will take up their challenge to give one hour of their time this year to a local school.

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