Grade 12 Legacy Gift: WAB Guardhouse

Grade 12 Legacy Gift: WAB Guardhouse

The guardhouse project started as just a proposal for the senior legacy gift. I had realized that some of the guards have been working at WAB for as long as I've been here (6 years), and I've seen them every day, and know nothing about them. So initially what I wanted to do was build a bridge between the senior class and the guards. I met with Mark Mazzerol, the head of security, and asked him how I could help.

That's when I was introduced to the guardhouse. The guardhouse is right across the road from the High School (I assume you've seen it - if not I recommend you do!), so I've driven past it every day for 6 years now and had no idea of its existence. When I saw the guardhouse, my initial thought was that I was genuinely impressed that WAB provides a house for the guards that work there. The guardhouse houses 48 guards from all over the country, most of whom only visit home once a year, and give majority of their earnings to their families back home.

But what I noticed about the guardhouse was that while it was clearly a house, it didn't look much like a home. Don't get me wrong, it's not about the "style" - a home is not made up of expensive furniture that all matches perfectly. My point is that a home has a bed you're comfortable sleeping in, it has places you feel safe keeping your things, and a home has things that you can call your own. The guardhouse, for the most part, had none of these things. The lockers were broken, most of the beds were being supported by bricks (and didn't have any mattresses), there weren't enough bowls and chopsticks, and the walls needed repainting. As you can see, the guardhouse didn't suffer any great problems that made their living conditions "unsafe" - but the senior legacy gift gives us an opportunity to raise thousands of yuan, so why not dedicate it to helping someone else? And why shouldn't that someone else be someone within the WAB community? That's when the senior legacy gift project became what it was - a project to help make the guardhouse a home.

We're all so blessed to attend WAB, and I am so happy that we were able to dedicate our efforts to helping a part of the WAB community. It is an additional benefit that the guardhouse is accessible to the rest of the school, rather than being an anonymous project where the students don't get to see what they are raising money for. As a senior class, we did several fundraisers: closet sale, WAB sweatpants, parent/teacher jackets, babysitting, bake sales, etc. We raised about 60 000 kuai.

What we managed to accomplish through these fundraisers:

  • Re-painted outside and inside the rooms
  • New beds
  • New mattresses
  • New sheets
  • Plants for decoration
  • New cups, chopsticks, bowls
  • New cutlery

In addition to what we purchased, there were donations from the parents and teachers, including Jacqui Conlon, Michaela Gillespie, Paige Whitley and the Morrells. From these parents and teachers we received a television, cupboards, a couch, chairs, a carpet, and a TV stand.With all of these items combined, the guardhouse became a beautiful home, but also a comfortable home. I feel we have been successful in achieving the aim of the senior legacy gift, however I do hope that the project will continue in the future and that we can keep making sure the guards are comfortable. What I would have liked to do, if I was able to continue my work next year, is to set up a "Guardhouse Fund". This fund would be used for any support the guards might need, such as surgeries, cleaning, or whatever else may be necessary. My hope is that someone will recognize the importance of the project and continue the work of the class of 2013.


Each year the graduating class of WAB raises funds and develops a plan in order to leave a gift of some sort to the school or to the community in their name. This year, the Senior Legacy Gift project was the WAB Guardhouse. Astrid Samuelsberg, WAB Graduate - Class of 2013, and Senior Legacy Gift project coordinator, explains how this year's Senior Legacy Gift came about.