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Fundraiser teaches kids compassion

Students and staff get behind one hundred day-long fundraiser to benefit local family
Students from Cecil Sly Elementary School can pat themselves on the back today, for a job well done.
   As a service project the whole school got behind a 100 day-long effort to raise funds for a worthy cause.
   The cause they chose this year was to help pay medical bills for Prineville resident Laura Chaput who is suffering from a rare kidney disease.
   Janet Burgraff, librarian, spearheaded the project after hearing of a similar event held at Culver's school.
   "The idea was that during the first hundred days we would raise as much money as we could with a target of $1,000. If we could bring in 1,000 pennies every day we could raise the money we needed," explained Ida Settlemyer.
   The wholistic goal of the project included augmenting curricular activities while expanding students' capacities for empathy and compassion. "We picked a family in our school, and we wanted it to be a project where the kids not only learned mathematical skills, but also learned to care about other people," she said.
   When Chaput heard that the school was raising funds to help her, she wanted to reciprocate, and volunteered at the school for as long as her health allowed.
   "While she was able, Laura did several classes for our students describing her disease and talking about health issues," she said.
   The whole school is so happy with the results of the first project that they have decided to make it an annual event, called the 100 Days Project. Each year they will target a different needy cause, and raise all the funds they can to help out.
   "Many of our students have done extraordinary things to help raise funds," Settlemyer said. "One classroom put together a lemonade stand to raise money and one student that I know of gave up his allowance for a whole year toward the effort."