Sugar is often said to be bad for children.
Sugar Makery, the popcorn, candy and soda store in Glenwood is proving the opposite by collecting funds for local schools. The Makery has raised nearly $2,000 so far after a month of collecting.
Patrons are asked if they want to round up on their orders at checkout, and that money goes through donorschoose.org to support a project from a local teacher.
“At Sugar Makery, we ask our customers if they want to round up, and it’s amazing how our community has rallied around that. Even those that come from out of town love that the funds are going back to the community,” said Alexis McCue, owner of Sugar Makery.
An estimated 90% of patrons choose to donate, McCue said.
“Knowing more about donorschoose.org helps people know their money isn’t going to some corporate organization,” said McCue. “The funds are going to a local teacher and a school around the street.”
The first project funded a Cricut machine at Glenwood Northeast Elementary School. The machine is used for die-cutting and crafting cuts into materials. This machine helps students identify their own names and those of classmates, requested by kindergarten teacher Deb Fajardo.
“In kindergarten, we start out the year a lot with learning to spell their names and write their names. I wanted to have something that could make it in all different ways and on all different things,” Fajardo said.
The cutting machine arrived a couple of weeks ago, and it’s been used to cut names in metal, and will be used on wood and wool, she said.
“This project had such a great feeling as it wasn’t just one big donor coming in. It’s a lot of people wanting to support education and our learners,” said Fajardo.
The second project funded by Sugar Makery filled a flex-space lounge with learning chairs, ottomans, and a couch for the transitional kindergarten class at Northeast Elementary School, requested by TK teacher Elizabeth Jensen.
“I think it’s awesome that we’re such a tight-knit community and they came together for their teachers. It’s a proud, almost astonished, feeling that we’re being supported so much in our classrooms,” Jensen said.
The cost of the space added up to almost $1,500, and Jensen said she couldn’t have reached that goal without donations and the support of the community.
“We thought it was a good way to get the community involved. At the end of the project, once it’s fully funded, the teacher receives the materials at the school,” McCue said. “As long as our customers are willing to round up dollars to go toward local classes, we’ll keep donations open. As long as the local schools have a project open, we’re going to keep doing what we can.”
Sugar Makery is currently raising funds for the Glenwood Thrive Program, an alternative program associated with Glenwood High School. The teacher is requesting a single tablet chair and a double tablet sofa for the classroom for student comfort.