LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — Varsity water polo player, opera singer and 4.0-scholar Emmie Johnston had her heart set on trying out for a singing solo at her 2020 graduation at Buena High School in Ventura.
“I’ve always been told that graduation was the it thing,” she said.
But with school closures in light of the coronavirus pandemic, Johnston understands that she won’t get that chance.
“I understand that we have to have this closure to help save lives, to help prevent the spread of the virus,” she said.
And when Sara Reeves, a Camarillo resident, noticed signs at homes where 2020 grads like Johnston were mourning the loss of their senior year, she was determined to lift their spirits.
“And it got the wheels spinning in my head that I wanted to do something to them to say, ‘Hey, I see you.'”
So she recently started the Ventura Class of 2020 Adopt-A-Grad page on Facebook where parents can post information about their 2020 grads in hopes of being adopted by people who want to let them know that their achievements have not gone unnoticed.
Close to 2,000 parents from all over Ventura County have posted their child’s profile, and 200 graduates have been adopted.
“I really think these seniors need our community to show them that we get it,” Reeves said.
Twins Bryce and Kendyl Blau, seniors at Camarillo High School were two of the seniors adopted after their mom posted their information on the page.
“She got us bundt cakes and little yard signs,” Kendyl said. “It feels great to be recognized that we’re missing all of our senior activities and stuff.”
The Ventura County Class of 2020 Adopt-A-Grad Facebook group is a private page monitored by a group of moms. Parents can request to join the group and decide how their kids will receive gifts once they’re adopted.
Similar groups have been set up for other areas and can be found by searching on Facebook.
If you are, or know of a Southern California senior, and feel that they deserve some extra recognition, complete the online form to be recognized on air.