Have you noticed that sometimes in the rush of the holiday madness, the real reason for Thanksgiving is lost, or at least pushed to the background? With the commercial push for Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, and Cyber Monday, showing our thanks for the non-profits that make life better in our communities seems to be relegated to out of sight, out of mind.
This is the reason that Giving Tuesday was started. This year it is the Tuesday after Thanksgiving – December 1, 2015 – and we encourage everyone to take a moment to remember those charities that serve the community every day and depend on outside support to survive. This is the first year that The Dr Pepper Museum and Free Enterprise Institute is a partner in Giving Tuesday. We have established a goal of $6,000 to be raised, and set up a special online giving page to make it easier for our supporters.
A portion of our goal is $3,500 to provide our new Mobile Outreach Programs to 10 Title I schools at no charge. The Free Enterprise Institute developed three new programs to teach free enterprise at the elementary level. The first program uses the invention of Dr Pepper and the Waco economy in 1885 as a model of free enterprise economics. The second looks at business models that recycle post-consumer waste into new products. The third deals with inventions and the industries created by new products or ideas.
Title I schools receive financial assistance from the government because they serve a high number of children from low-income families in an effort to ensure that all children meet challenging state and local academic standards (for more information about Title I schools, visit the US Department of Education website). Our outreach programs are designed to engage students in learning free enterprise and entrepreneurial concepts, which teach valuable lessons about success and improving their community through hard work and determination.
With the increased cost of providing summer programming, we have seen our attendance fall over the last several years. Parents have cited the increase in price as a primary factor in their decision to not enroll their children in camp. An additional $1,500 is needed to offer scholarships to 10 children who otherwise could not afford to attend our summer camp programs. Dr Pepper Museum Summer Camp offers a fun look at science-based experiments, free enterprise education, hands on soda fountain fun, and interactive historical activities.
The last $1,000 is needed to purchase special storage materials to safeguard archive items from deterioration. The torrential rains this summer and fall exposed problems with a 62-year-old roof that are being addressed, but the expenses and projects associated with the protection of the collection and archives are ongoing.
The staff and board members of the Dr Pepper Museum and Free Enterprise Institute are so thankful for the support of donors, visitors, and volunteers in Waco and beyond. We want to help enrich the community in better, different ways every year, and appreciate your continued recognition as a vital part of Waco and soft drink history. Participating in Giving Tuesday is a way to recognize key needs in our organization and serve people in Waco and the surrounding areas; thank you in advance for your gift towards our Giving Tuesday goal.
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