STREAMING NOW: Watch Now

6th graders jump-start Sparrow Club at local elementary school

Today was the final Sparrow assembly for Kennedy Elementary school where, just four months ago, students started participating in community service to raise support for their Sparrow, Everly.

Posted: May 15, 2019 12:41 PM
Updated: May 16, 2019 2:50 AM

MEDFORD, Ore. — Sparrow Clubs around southern Oregon are starting to wrap up as the school year comes to a close. Today was the final Sparrow assembly for Kennedy Elementary School where, just four months ago, students started participating in community service to raise support for their Sparrow, Everly.

It all started with two 6th grade students, Maritza Villas and Betzy Ordonez, wanted to have their school sponsor a Sparrow. With the school year already half over, they called up Matt Sampson, Sparrow Club’s National Program Director, and asked if they could get started.

Now, four months later, Kennedy Elementary not only reached their service hour goal of 256 hours, they doubled that and did a separate penny drive to donate items to their Sparrow.

“It makes me think of all the good things that you can do in your life,” said Villa, when asked what it was like to see their success.

Ordonez explained why she even pushed to bring Sparrow Clubs to their school in the first place: “I want them to have a life like I have. I want them to have fun and not be worried about their healthiness.”

“It’s been a really life-changing experience,” said Kevin Turner, Everly’s dad. “This last year has been hard for us. We’ve been through a lot in a short amount of time and so it’s nice to see all these kids come together and help this little girl.”

Everly suffers from a rare disease called Cystinosis. Only 500 people in the U.S. have been diagnosed with the metabolic disease.
“Her body doesn’t process or rid her cells of cystine,” explained Everly’s mom, Haven Combs. “It affects literally every organ in her body. She also is in kidney failure, that’s a part of the disease.”

Everly is only 20 months old. She was diagnosed at 9 months. Combs says they spent the majority of the summer at Doernbecher in Portland.

“She was diagnosed at nine months with ‘failure to thrive’ she eats and eats and eats but she wasn’t gaining any weight. She got really backed up in her digestive system and that’s initially what we went in for,” said Combs. “Then they did x-rays and bloodwork and it was all very mysterious.”

Kennedy Elementary partnered with Banner Bank and Grants Pass Active Club and today they awarded Everly with $2,650.00.

“All that money is going to go towards Everly and all of her expenses in life,” said Turner.

Sparrow Clubs is an education charity with a mission to encourage heroic acts of kindness in schools and youth by partnering a school with a child in medical need. A sponsor funds a Sparrow Club at a local school, each club gets matched up with a Sparrow (a child in medical need). Students then volunteer in their community to earn funds for their Sparrow. Sparrows then receive the funds raised to go towards their medical expenses.

Oregon Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 9930

Reported Deaths: 213
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Multnomah241769
Marion161047
Washington153420
Clackamas82125
Umatilla7166
Union3551
Lincoln3463
Deschutes2110
Lane2083
Malheur1911
Polk15912
Linn1579
Jackson1470
Jefferson1320
Yamhill1328
Klamath1301
Benton935
Morrow931
Hood River880
Wasco881
Josephine521
Clatsop510
Douglas460
Coos420
Columbia360
Lake210
Tillamook140
Crook120
Wallowa100
Curry80
Baker50
Sherman20
Gilliam10
Grant10
Harney10
Unassigned00
Wheeler00

California Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 252895

Reported Deaths: 6334
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Los Angeles1078263457
Riverside19450479
Orange16191363
San Diego15696387
San Bernardino13676269
Imperial7039114
Alameda6556140
Fresno585177
Kern513081
Santa Clara5077160
Tulare4627136
San Joaquin447455
Sacramento400469
San Francisco377650
Contra Costa356481
San Mateo3536108
Santa Barbara326129
Ventura324047
Marin271921
Kings260032
Stanislaus253144
Monterey191515
Solano147625
Sonoma135911
Merced127211
Placer82811
San Luis Obispo7012
Yolo61325
Madera5785
Santa Cruz4553
Napa3764
San Benito2652
Sutter2433
Lassen2420
El Dorado2260
Butte2063
Shasta1484
Humboldt1444
Nevada1291
Glenn1220
Yuba1061
Tehama881
Lake870
Mendocino850
Colusa700
Del Norte581
Calaveras530
Mono451
Tuolumne430
Inyo331
Amador310
Siskiyou310
Mariposa271
Plumas110
Alpine20
Trinity20
Sierra10
Unassigned00
Medford
Clear
77° wxIcon
Hi: 86° Lo: 53°
Feels Like: 78°
Brookings
Clear
57° wxIcon
Hi: 62° Lo: 47°
Feels Like: 57°
Crater Lake
Clear
74° wxIcon
Hi: 77° Lo: 45°
Feels Like: 74°
Grants Pass
Clear
79° wxIcon
Hi: 86° Lo: 52°
Feels Like: 79°
Klamath Falls
Clear
74° wxIcon
Hi: 81° Lo: 42°
Feels Like: 74°
Sunny weather continues Sunday
KDRV Radar
KDRV Fire Danger
KDRV Weather Cam

Community Events