Legos for Cuban Children
Teacher seeks to use Legos to build a bridge between U.S. and Cuba
Posted on 12/09/2016
Christy Davis collecting Legos
Legos have been used by children to build a lot of interesting construction projects over the years but a Floyd County teacher is hoping to use the kid's building toy to forge the gulf between the people of the United States and Cuba.  The Legos would not form a physical bridge to the island country but would be a symbolic connection to a new generation to affect change.

Christy Davis, a sixth-grade social studies teacher at Pepperell Middle School, is collecting Legos to send to Cuba for children in the barrio to use in creative play.  "We have to help the next generation to see their own potential to make creative changes," stated Davis. "This is a great start to that process."

Davis visited Cuba last summer as part of a Rural Teacher Global Fellowship sponsored by the Rural School and Community Trust.  During her trip, she met Pavel Garcia, who is working with kids in his neighborhood to reclaim some of the buildings that have fallen into disrepair.  Garcia and his wife created, an organization offering the children of the barrio the opportunity to participate in chess tournaments, mini-Olympics, track meets, soccer leagues and other educational learning opportunities.  "They told me that they would like to offer Legos as an outlet for creative play, but it's almost impossible to find Legos in Cuba," Davis said.

The building toy is much more readily available in this country so Davis is soliciting new Legos, old Legos no longer being used, money to purchase Legos and volunteers to help with the logistics and packaging of the kid's construction materials for shipment to Cuba.  "I have worked with the U.S. government to get clearance for the project so that we can get the Legos to the kids in the barrio," Davis said. 

"I had planned to start the project in January," Davis added. "However, there is uncertainty in the embargo policy now so it was important to start this now."  The changes in administrations in the United States and the death of Fidel Castro in Cuba has caused the project to go into fast-forward to get the Legos collected and shipped to the children in Cuba as soon as possible. 

Pepperell Middle School is getting behind the project by committing the proceeds from the sale of a Dragon Flag t-shirt to purchase Legos and help to pay for postage. The shirts have a Pepperell Dragon with an American flag pattern and the phrase "#DragonsUnited" on the back.  Davis would also welcome donations from the community to reach the project's goal.  "Please, please share this information with friends," Davis said. "I have promises of donations coming from across the country!"

If you would like to donate Legos or money to purchase them, you may do so at Pepperell Middle School or drop the donation at the central office location of Floyd County Schools on Riverside Parkway.