Alpaca Adds up to Fundraising Success at California School

Continuing an eight-year Almond School tradition, students spent three weeks in March donating spare change to The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s “Pennies for Patients” fundraiser.
The campaign raised $8,379, which when combined with matching funds from an anonymous donor resulted in a total donation of $16,758.
Almond was the top fundraising school in the Bay Area this year and set an all-time “Pennies for Patients” record in the Bay Area.
As promised for topping the 2012 fundraising total, Principal Nancy Davis and teacher Pam Sanderson kissed an alpaca at the school’s weekly assembly. The alpaca, named Baby, was on loan for the occasion from the Little Explorers Mobile Petting Zoo.
Coordinated by the school’s student council, students employed numerous creative fundraising strategies and incentive programs to best last year’s efforts.
In the past couple of years, Almond has had two students diagnosed with leukemia, according to teacher Sarah Hall.
Hall said the campaign really hit home for students.
“We raised over $7,000 last year. We raised the bar this year to raise at least $7,500,” she said. “With the incentive of the anonymous parent donor, the students were very motivated and rose to the challenge. They have proved to the community that no matter what age, we are all empowered to make a difference. The students are very proud, we are very proud.”
Davis said the project proved a valuable experience for students.
“It taught them that they can make an important difference in the lives of others,” she said. “It is gratifying that our students’ efforts are benefiting an outstanding organization like The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society.”
“Pennies for Patients” is among the society’s slate of national School & Youth Programs that raise funds to find cures for leukemia, lymphoma and myeloma and to provide information and support services to patients and their families.
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