Students at Lone Pine Elementary School are participants in the "Pennies for Power" school-based fund-raising and energy-education campaign through the The Heat and Warmth Fund (THAW), sponsored by the Michigan First Credit Union and WWJ Newsradio 950.
The outreach program is directed at students in Southeast Michigan and includes a cost-free energy education component for students and a school-wide penny (and other coin) drive that supports THAW’s emergency utility assistance to Michigan families facing an energy crisis.
Other participating schools include the Detroit Leadership Academy Elementary and Middle School and Cesar Chavez in Detroit; Birney K-8, McIntyre Elementary and MacArthur K-8 University in Southfield; Winchester Elementary in Northville; and Bingham Farms Elementary.
Classrooms at each school will compete with each other to see which class can raise the most money. The winning classroom from each school will receive a pizza party to thank them for their efforts. The change will be collected and counted by Michigan First Credit Union and representatives from each school will present their donations to THAW during the 10th Annual WWJ Newsradio 950 Winter Survival Radiothon on Feb. 1-2 at Art Van Furniture in Warren.
Last year, more than 2,800 students from eight different schools across Southeast Michigan collected 342,882 coins totaling more than $6,900 for THAW.
Students have been encouraged to earn their donation by helping out at home with family chores or special responsibilities, according to the Bloomfield Hills Schools Facebook page.
In addition to raising funds for THAW, the program also includes a learning component in which representatives from THAW provide age-appropriate energy education materials and/or classes to participating schools. The experience gives students safety and conservation training that they can take back into their homes and communities.
"The students participating in Pennies for Power receive important life lessons such as teaching the importance of giving and how their efforts and even pennies can make a big difference in keeping our neighbors warm this winter," said Rose Sarti from THAW in a news release. "Additionally, the program's energy education element teaches students at an early age about energy sources and conservation in their own homes and lays the foundation for them to be smart energy users during their lifetime."