In HearSway

High school seniors across the country have now missed much of what makes being a senior special — from sports to award ceremonies, theater productions and even prom. Through a global pandemic that has upended all of our lives, new efforts are being made to make these students feel special.

One local effort has come in the form of a Facebook group that is leading to real connections. On Adopt a High School Senior (Moore Co., NC), you’ll find posts featuring photos of seniors from across the county and their accomplishments. Members of the group are then “adopting” the seniors; pledging anything from a greeting card to a small gift certificate or other show of support.

Photos of seniors that have been adopted via Adopt a High School Senior (Moore Co, NC)

“One lady posted about her daughter wanting to do a backyard prom, so a group member asked if she could supply the decorations,” said Tammy Abercrombie, a Carthage resident who founded the group on April 25. “Some people are looking for seniors who share a common interest or post something that touches them. They don’t want to just put a card in the mail, but to start a relationship.”

Tammy started the group after a Facebook friend invited her to join a similar page based in Wilmington. She looked for a statewide page where she could post about her niece Ashlyn Powers, a senior at North Moore, but the North Carolina group was too big — “it didn’t have that personal touch.”

Tammy and her niece, Ashlyn, a senior at North Moore.

By April 27, Tammy’s Moore County Adopt a Senior group had grown to 822 members. By May 3, it hit 1,982. Some seniors are immediately adopted by people who already know and love them, while others are being adopted by strangers. Longtime elementary school teachers have posted, looking for seniors who were in their class years ago. People who aren’t Facebook-saavy are reaching out to Tammy directly, asking her to help them find a senior to “adopt.”

“I don’t know what I was really expecting, but we can’t get the seniors posted fast enough,” she says. “I think so many people are happy to see this take a positive direction. Instead of seniors focusing on this year’s disappointments and feeling like they’re missing out, they’re focusing on all the support they’re receiving from the community.”

Find the Moore County Adopt a Senior group here.

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