LANCASTER- In just one week’s time, William Street School students raised more than $5,500 through a “All for Books” coin collection campaign, a campaign to help ensure that as many children as possible receive and have access to books.
Coordinated by William Street School Principal Jacqueline Bull and Wendy Buchert, a parent volunteer and member of the school board, Buchert said she wanted to hold a Scholastic Book Fair, which was held Monday evening, but they were also trying to figure out ways that they could make it bigger and earn more money.
One of the ways to do that was through a program called All for Books.
“We raise money as a school, we purchase books from Scholastic, and we donate those books,” said Buchert. “We chose Women’s and Children’s Hospital this year.”
In order to raise money, it was decided to hold a coin collection campaign from Nov. 13 to Nov. 19 and each day was assigned a certain coin. For instance, one day was pennies, then nickels, dimes and so on and so forth.
Buchert said the students, which include grades fourth, fifth, and sixth, brought in 70,000 pennies and 11,000 nickels alone and it just went on from there. It was also an all out effort by several students, including some from the Good Citizen’s Club, and parents who helped to roll the coins.
“It was just mind blowing to us,” said Buchert. “This is what this community is doing. It was really amazing, and all I did was send home a half sheet notice of what we were doing and these parents and kids responded.”
William Street School teachers also participated in a “Teacher’s Dress Down Day” which brought in more than $200 and was donated to the program.
In addition, Scholastic matches the monetary donations a school generates, with a donation of up to one million books to two national non-profit organizations dedicated to helping children, families, and teachers acquire books and educational resources. These organizations are: Kids in Distressed Situations, Inc. and the Kids in Need Foundation.
Also, Monday evening included a poster raffle, which all the proceeds went toward the All for Books program. According to Pam Pane, William Street School fourth grade creative writing teacher and liaison for Women’s and Children’s Hospital, a grant total of $5,586 was raised in one week which resulted in them buying 646 books.
“We are so proud of them and their generosity,” Pane remarked, who knows firsthand the work the hospital does as her daughter was a patient for 16 months. Sadly, her daughter passed away, but she said the hospital care and staff were exceptional in trying to help.
Pane will be working with the hospital to set up a future date to give the books to them and the books will possibly be distributed in two ways. There is a volunteer part of the hospital called the book nook, where volunteers take books to all the different rooms or the books could be given as gifts to some of the children.
Buchert also mentioned that this effort was held back-to-back to another fund-raising event which was held beforehand. The students raised and will be donating $4,000 to the Bryce Buchholz Memorial Fund, which will help to build a skate park in Bryce’s honor.
Bryce was riding his bike along Lake Avenue in Lancaster last May when he was hit and killed by a drunk driver.