Church helps high school create ‘safe place’ for students

It’s a safe place for high school students to hang out. While trying to keep them out of dangerous situations, a local school and church teamed up to create a space where students love to be.

“I come almost every day,” said Ezra Yohannes, a junior at Highland High School.

A growing number of HHS students are making the ‘HUB’ their before and after school hangout.

“Yeah, instead of going to a park where there are weirdos, you know?” said Paradise Sleet, a freshman at Highland.

It’s a place students can play games, get homework help or just relax.

“If I’m going to need to like, do my work, there’s a lot of tutors around and that helps a lot,” said Yohannes.

“We can meet each other here and just hang out,” said Sleet.

In the International District that surrounds Highland, there’s really no other place like it.

“It’s incredibly important. A lot of the students that come in here, they don’t have necessarily a stellar place to go to after school,” said Tessa Snyder, the Community School Coordinator at HHS.

The old woodshop started transforming at the beginning of this year when volunteers from Copper Pointe Church got involved.

“We’d heard from the school there was a need for a space,” said Nick Camacho, the Advancement Pastor at Copper Pointe.

The growing list of both new and repeat check-ins, tells the church and school the HUB is already making a difference.

“Every story that comes out of people getting a better grade on a test or staying out of trouble because they were in the HUB is just validation,” said Camacho.

The church and school are still working on phases two, three and four.

Phase two includes space for workforce development, college prep, tutoring, e-sports, and a gaming club. This is expected to be finished by the start of next school year.

Phases three and four will add a fitness center and film and movie production space to HUB.

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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