High School Students Donate Copier to Special Education Department 

High School Students Donate Copier to Special Education Department 

 

Story by CISD Communications Intern Sri Jishnu Chintha, a senior at CHS

Shraavya Pydisetti, founder of Project Querencia, and Special Education Teacher Erika Chavez

Shraavya Pydisetti, founder of Project Querencia, and Special Education Teacher Erika Chavez

On Oct. 11, the Coppell student-led nonprofit organization, Project Querencia, gifted a $500 Epson Ecotank ET-3850 Printer to the Coppell High School Special Education/Transitional Pathways Department as their annual gift. 

 

Every year, Project Querencia partners with transitional pathways and SPED to provide items that are on the department’s wish list. Last year, Project Querencia provided $200 worth of items from fidget toys to puzzles, candy grams and handmade paintings. 

 

“We provide these items in order to support these awesome kids and incredible teachers we have in the district who work hard every day to make sure that every student is valued and appreciated. This is our way of giving back” said CHS Senior and Project Querencia Chief Executive Officer/Founder Shraavya Pydisetti. 

 

The organization works directly with CHS Special Education Teacher Erika Chavez to plan this partnership. 

 

“Receiving the Epson printer from the members of Project Querencia has made a significant impact on the accessibility of having colored materials. As a self-contained, special education teacher, I spend the majority of the day in my classroom. I am thankful to have a colored printer within arms reach as it has already allowed my team to enhance communication between learner and teacher through the use of pictorial and visual representations. Having colored materials throughout the classroom also allows for a more engaging learning environment. I have been able to personalize classroom tools and materials using the colored printer. To some, it may seem as an item that is not deemed necessary, but to my classroom it is essential!  Thank you Project Querencia for valuing and supporting our Transitional Pathways program,” Chavez said. 

 

Project Querencia has continued to grow in size and impact, continuing to become more integrated in different clubs and organizations in Coppell ISD. In the past two years, Project Querencia members have served over 23,000 people over a series of 150 initiatives. The organization has grown past Coppell to 10 chapters including an international reach in India. 

 

In the past few months, the organization was invited to take part in the 2-day Professional Triathletes Organization U.S. Open that took place in the Levy Plaza on Sept. 17 to Sept. 18, where they were recognized for their service to Dallas Fort Worth and provided a $1,500 grant.

 

 “I enjoyed getting to foster new relationships with the community and working with people from different areas. I got to help manage traffic while the runners were completing the track and it really felt good being a part of something bigger than myself and participating in a worldwide screened event” said CHS Junior and Project Querencia volunteer Sirini Karunadasa. 

 

Project Querencia also partnered with Coppell HOSA and invited members of their team to attend the Triathlon alongside them; the team netted over 500 hours in that one weekend. 

 

The organization was also recognized as an inaugural recipient of the Taco Bell Foundation x Ashoka Ambition Accelerator, a competition where top innovating non-profits pitch ideas and compete for funding, and received $500 in seed funding. 

 

“Project Querencia is all about making a bigger impact, it’s one of our core values. Seeing people believe in our idea and placing it as a top innovative nonprofit against thousands of organizations has been really rewarding. This seed grant is really going to help us do more on a bigger scale” said CHS Senior and Project Querencia Executive Board Secretary Kaamya Pilaka. 

 

Alongside that, the organization revised its mission statement to “creating the changemakers of tomorrow” with which they launched the new Business Sector which is responsible for bridging the gap between service and the low-income community. 

 

The Project Querencia Executive Board named CHS Senior and DECA Representative Jishnu Chintha, CHS Senior Ajay Alluri, CHS Senior and DECA Member Vrishti Jain, CHS Senior Harini Chandrasekhar, and Plano West Senior High Junior Bhaumik Tiwari as the 2022-23 Inaugural Business Sector and Foundation Activities Directors. 

 

“Being a director has provided me the opportunity to connect service with my future career. I’ve been able to learn how to connect to my community and the impact that I can make in the world with my strengths and skill set”  said CHS Senior and Business Director Ajay Alluri. “The Project Querencia business sector has accomplished remarkable feats from proposal planning to making elevated rounds in networking efforts. It’s been a resounding experience being a part of this process over the past months. I believe Project Querencia will take what we’ve learned and committed to in order to start anew with our sponsorship efforts as well as building upon our Emerging Changemakers Program, which teaches adolescents the rudimentary and intermediate skills necessary to make a change in the community” says CHS Senior and Project Querencia Business Director Vrishti Jain.

 

This phenomenal team and the executive team has now launched two programs, the Querencia Serve Foundation and the Emerging Changemakers Program that are working towards making change-making available to students and awarding scholarships to students in need.  

 

Project Querencia has provided students in the district with opportunities to lead, create, serve, explore new skills, and partake in change-making experiences that are making a difference. Our students have created a platform that is genuinely redefining success. 

 

“Project Querencia has given me an outlet to serve my community. It’s taught me what is truly important in life, and that happiness is found in helping others. I’m grateful for the ability to work with people who can teach me so much and inspire me to be better,” said CHS Junior and Project Querencia Vice President Roma Jani.