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Ritenour’s Inaugural Newcomer Resource Fair is Resounding Success

Newcomer Resource Fair

Ritenour School District’s commitment to supporting its diverse community was on full display during its first-ever Newcomer Resource Fair, held on March 1, 2024, in the Ritenour Auditorium lobby. The event provided essential community resources to families new to the United States who now live in Ritenour. 

Twenty-five Ritenour families who have been in the country for less than six months attended this fair. The families who attended have children at the Ritenour International Welcome Center and several Ritenour elementary schools.

The fair served as a vital bridge between Ritenour’s newcomer families and a host of community partners, each offering a wealth of resources tailored to meet the diverse needs of the attendees. Ritenour is grateful for the following organizations that provided important information to families:  LifeWise STL, CAASTLC, Ritenour’s Adult Education Program, St. Louis County Library-Rock Road Library Branch, Interfaith Community on Latin America, Presentation Arts, and Midland Medical. 

“It was wonderful to see our newcomer families get to know each other and learn about the community resources available to them to help them adjust to their new homes here in Ritenour,” said Julie Hahn, assistant superintendent for data, intervention and student support. “Our student volunteers, our staff and our community partners really made this event special for our families.”

Ritenour High School students who are part of Student Leadership and the National Honor Society also helped make the event a success. Students volunteered their time and creativity by engaging the children of attending families with fun crafts, activities and snacks while their parents explored the array of community resources. Shoutouts go to RHS students Journee Sanders, Elizabeth Weissler, Zoha Iqbal, Betanya Kassie, Logan Simpson and Reagan Beverly.

Additionally, a group of dedicated RHS bilingual students helped newcomers overcome language barriers as they visited different booths. A special thank you is extended to Evelyn Flores, Yazmin Tavarez, Nayma Medina Márquez, Flor Quiroz Rivera, Alba Valenzuela Castillo, and Ada Volpitto.

This first-time event was coordinated by Bilingual Parent Liaison Victoria Forgash,  Bilingual Therapist Judy McGrath and Carolyn Cueto. Plans already are underway for another Newcomer Resource Fair for the fall of 2024. 

Newcomer Resource Fair