New Eagle Elementary School in Tredyffrin, PA, doesn’t think that first graders are too young to start thinking about helping others. Case in point: Jackson Moul, who made the most of a fundraising challenge, ended up earning more than $600 and then donated it to the Diabetes Parent Support Network at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.
Jackson and his sister, LaurenHis teacher, Beth Adams, use a grant from the school’s Parent-Teacher Organization to give each child in her class $10 in seed money to use to raise even more money for a worthy cause. “It’s a way to get them thinking about helping other people,” says Adams. “We also teach ways to make the money grow.”
Jackson used his $10 to buy supplies for a s’mores party. With the help of his mother, Diane, he created a website to get the word out about his party and intention to donate all proceeds to CHOP. More than 45 people paid $5 to attend the party and more donations came in over the website.
Jackson has type 1 diabetes and has attended the Live Well with Diabetes conference, sponsored by CHOP, and visited Camp Freedom, a summer sleep-away camp for children with diabetes, with his mother, who was a volunteer. “He’s too young to be a camper, but he loved going there,” says Diane.
Diane’s connection to CHOP stems from a work placement program that was part of her work toward a master’s of social work degree. She spent time in the Division of Endocrinology, including the DCC and the endocrinology unit. While she had first-hand knowledge of the challenges of caring for a child with diabetes, she learned even more when she attended meetings of the Diabetes Parent Support Network. At the network’s meetings throughout the year, families learn the ins and outs of living with diabetes and also share with — and learn from — other parents about strategies that work. Meetings are held at CHOP’s Main Campus six times a year.
“I knew how much families benefit from the meetings,” Diane says, “and I knew the money would help pay the expenses for a few meetings. There was a direct connection.”
Adams says her class raised more than $3,995 overall for a wide variety of nonprofits. “I told the kids: You don’t have to have buckets of money to help others,” Adams says. “See how your $10 has grown!”
At the school’s Spring Fair, Adams asked students to donate books they no longer read and resold them for $1 each, raising $600. She donated that money to Children’s Hospital as well — half to the DCC and half to the Cancer Center in honor of a former student who was treated at CHOP for leukemia. “CHOP is a place that has touched me,” she says.