McKenzie students raise funds in “Pennies for Patients” project

Published 4:00 pm Friday, February 23, 2018

This week, students at McKenzie School are making a difference for cancer. As part of a school fundraiser, students and teachers are collecting pennies and other loose change for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, the largest non-profit health organization in the world.

Since 1994, students have raised millions of dollars throughout the country in pennies, funding research projects for therapies that save the lives of blood cancer patients.

As part of a three-week donation period, the “Pennies for Patients” project is currently in the second week of fundraising.

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Vice Principal Lisa Hatch organized the event. In an effort to meet a need, Hatch explained the reason for the project.

“Many students that I have had in the past, not necessarily here in McKenzie but at other schools have been diagnosed with cancer.”

She added, “We never know when we might be in need of these resources. This is a way for the students to help others.” The overall goal for the school is $2,018 in honor of the year. As of Tuesday, the school had raised $1180.

Hatch is hopeful the school will reach the total fundraising goal. She said, “I think we will reach the goal. These kids love pennies and finding loose change!”

In an effort to motivate the students, the class with the most money raised at the end of each week will receive a pizza party. This past week Miss Emily Gesink’s Kindergarten class raised $185.

Gesink said, “I’ve talked to the parents about the wonderful opportunity to teach the kids about giving back.”

Gesink’s small class of 13 students is currently in first place raising over $300 this week.

Donations can be made online and at the school until Feb. 23. To make a donation visit the website at or call the school office at 334-374-2711.