Anchorage School District has been a nationwide leader in SEL programming for many years, but was searching for one unified program to implement across their middle schools. Lions recognized a unique opportunity; through their own network, they had connections with district leadership, and through LCIF, they had access to both funding and a proven SEL program.
The Lions of District 49A secured a grant from LCIF and from Northrim Bank, a local bank, to make Lions Quest possible for the Anchorage School District. Lions also attended the teacher training workshops and are still actively involved, meeting with school officials to discuss the program and Lions’ involvement in the school district and broader Anchorage community. The students in the Anchorage middle schools have already seen success since Lions Quest was implemented. Thomas, an eighth-grade student at Hanshew Middle School, has taken away a particularly important life lesson. “Lions Quest can’t change the things people do or say, but it helps explain how people should handle things when people do or say things don’t like.” Another student, Ji, reflected on how the program is cultivating more positive behavior. “Lions Quest opens up positive options that we sometimes can’t see in ourselves.” Thanks to the Lions of District 49-A, their local partners, and LCIF, thousands of students in Anchorage are well on their way to a bright future.