Project Read and Reach Students' Video Creation and Fundraising Efforts
An after school enrichment program called Project Read and Reach in St. Charles School District, Missouri, engaged its students in a globally-minded service learning project in Spring 2014. Project Peanut Butter representatives came to speak to children at Lincoln and Blackhurst Schools about malnutrition in Malawi.
In response, PRR students decided to take action and support Project Peanut Butter’s efforts. As a team, students created two documentary videos on the “Project Peanut Butter Story” to raise awareness about worldwide childhood malnutrition. Students also created handmade items to sell as a fundraiser at their Community/Parent Night for PPB. In tandem, PRR Kids enlisted the help of their school communities, Blackhurst and Lincoln Schools, by hosting a “Hat Day for Project Peanut Butter”.
Lastly, Midtown Market, a local grocery allowed the Lincoln PRR team to continue selling their PPB crafts to the public for an afternoon. PRR students wildly exceeded their goals, donating over $1,100 to Mrs. Mardi Manary, Executive Director of Project Peanut Butter! PRR children were quick to compute this meant over 40 children in Malawi would now have the nutrition it takes to beat the odds of this tragic disease.
Fashion Show Birthday Fundraiser
Hazel Pron of Denver, Colorado, is not your average seven-year-old girl. Hazel's interest in Project Peanut Butter was sparked one day as she sat with her mother and watched the video on our website. About two weeks later, during a discussion about helping others at her Catholic grade school, Most Precious Blood, Hazel mentioned PPB to her Vice Principal.
According to Hazel's mother, Regina Pron, "The school heard my little girl's voice and allowed her to grow great excitement from the little seed of information she originally had. Her school listened to her and is opening its arms to embrace PPB as one of its Lenten 'Fight Hunger' charities." Hazel was allowed to visit the school's K-8th grade classrooms with Vice Principal Roxie Mountain-Weed, telling the story of PPB with a poster she made, screening the PPB video, and handing out samples of RUTF. Throughout the days of Lent, the school agreed to donate the collection money from all school Masses to PPB--a total of over $1,000 so far!
Hazel took her advocacy to an even more personal level when she decided that she wanted to use her 7th birthday party as another way to contribute to PPB. Her parents helped her organize a "fashion show birthday party fundraiser," whereby admission to the fashion show was $1, all proceeds to go to PPB. Hazel raised $42 at her birthday party, which is more than enough to save the life of a malnourished child!
Thank you to Hazel, who continues to show us that even the youngest person can make a huge difference!
THE NUTTY RUN
Student members of the Cal UPHC (Undergraduate Public Health Coalition) at the University of California, Berkeley, came up with a creative way to raise funds and awareness for PPB: The Nutty Run. This 5K run around the UC Berkeley campus attracts participants from all over the Bay Area and is now hosted almost every year.
According to Rohini Rajgopal, current President of Cal UPHC, "We hope to not only help the children in Africa through our efforts but also open people's eyes to the struggles they may not realize exist in our world."
All proceeds from this event go to Project Peanut Butter. Thank you to Cal UPHC and all the nutty runners for making this event a reality!
Safety National Peanut Butter and Jelly Luncheon
Safety National Casualty Company, a St. Louis-based insurance carrier, has supported Project Peanut Butter since 2010 by hosting an annual peanut butter luncheon for employees in exchange for donations. John Paino, Safety National’s director of philanthropy, was originally inspired by an article that ran on Dr. Manary in the St. Louis Post Dispatch. The article stated that every $25 donated to Project Peanut Butter saved a life. This sparked an idea – instead of going out for lunch, what if employees donated the $5.00 that they would normally spend and, in exchange, the company provided a peanut butter and jelly lunch? By the end of lunch every table of six would have saved a life.
This idea resonated with employees. To date, Safety National has collected over $7,000 through the annual Project Peanut Butter Luncheon and has saved nearly 300 lives. In addition to donating, employees also get to learn more about Project Peanut Butter as PPB USA employees speak, show a video, and answer questions about PPB’s mission and goals.
This idea can be easily replicated in the business community, as well as in schools. In fact, Safety National brought their idea to a local Jesuit high school in 2012 and, together with the students, was able to raise nearly $5,000 additional donations that year.
Thank you, Safety National!
Check out Safety National's advocacy poster here.