Campus organizations bake to raise money for non-profit, education

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Nicole Zukowski, Life, Arts and Entertainment Editor

Many famous authors, politicians, public figures, musicians and proclaimed humanitarians have all spread the thought that one person could change the world; one action could make a difference.

One cupcake could give a girl an education, or at least contribute to a fund that gives girls access to education in developing countries.

The Women’s and Gender Studies Department and Psi Chi, the international psychology honors society, sold tie-dye cupcakes in the SUB on Nov. 5 as a way to participate in a national bake-off for the non-profit organization, She’s the First.

She’s the First has a mission to raise money in order to fund the education of girls in developing countries so that they can be the first in their family to graduate high school.

“This event emphasizes and raises awareness about the importance of education,” explained Anna Podrasky, president of Psi Chi. “With ‘She’s the First’, it is about sending a girl, particularly the first in her family, to school. One simple fundraiser could give a girl a chance at a better life.”

The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization reports that of the 104 million children between the ages of 6-11 that are not in school, about 58 percent are girls. One of the reasons girls’ education is not as valued as boys’ education is that families and communities believe the cost to educate a girl will not result as high of a return as that of a boys education.

“When you see how much good and progress is achieved when girls have access to education, it is so astounding. You could help break the cycle of poverty in one generation when you educate girls,” Jennifer Thomas, chair of the women’s and gender studies department.

Thomas goes on to explain that mothers will invest more back into their families, resulting in her children being better fed, more likely to receive medical care when ill and more likely, themselves, to receive an education.

Plan UK, a branch of the global children’s charity Plan International, found that for each dollar a mother earns, she will invest 80 cents back into her family, while fathers invest only 30 cents. Investing in girls’ education, in return, means investing in the health and well being of future generations of girls and boys.

“Psi Chi has been taking part in this national fundraiser for a few years now because it is something we find really important. We stride to meet our goal every year because the impact of us doing so really does change someone’s life,” said Abby Boltz, senior psychology major.

Last year, the group raised $360 at the event, which was enough to sponsor a girl named Mary.

Mary is an 18-year-old girl from Tanzania who was, at the time, going into her junior year of high school thanks to the funds that the Women’s and Gender Studies Department and Psi Chi raised from their cupcake sales.

This year the goal is $4oo, and Thomas mentions “100% of the profits will go towards funding a girl’s education.”

The Wilkes groups are going to wait two weeks before sending the money to She’s the First in case anyone who may not have been able to attend the bake sale would like to donate to the cause.

If interested in donating to the cause, contact Thomas via e-mail, at [email protected], or Anna Podrasky via e-mail, at [email protected]lkes.edu.

For more information on the non-profit organization and more information about female education access around the world, those interested are asked to visit the organiation’s website, ShesTheFirst.org.