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Kids squeeze in some First Friday fundraising

They may be only 7, but Addie May Pinson and Ava Schreffler wanted to earn some money to help buy school supplies for kids in less fortunate circumstances.

So, the two Riverside Elementary School students and two of their friends, Sophia Dean, 7, and Brielle Lowry, 8, decided to set up a lemonade stand during Milwaukie’s First Friday event from 5 to 8 p.m. on Sept. 6.

by: PHOTO BY ELLEN SPITALERI - Ava Schreffler, left, and Addie May Pinson taste the fruits of their labors as they sip the raspberry lemonade they just made.All of the proceeds, including any tips the girls collect, will go to Northwest Housing Alternatives, the organization that operates the Annie Ross House, an emergency shelter that provides services to families to help them overcome homelessness. Located across the street from Milwaukie High School, it has a main shelter that houses five families, with five transitional units nearby.

The lemonade stand project dovetails with the current Annie Ross House drive to collect school supplies for young people in transition, noted Jody Schreffler, Ava’s mother.

“We wanted to do this for all the people who don’t have homes,” said Ava, while Addie May added, “and lots of people don’t have money for school supplies.”

“This is something beautiful — it’s going to be hot, and the girls will be spending three hours at the lemonade stand, but they don’t see time as part of their gift,” Schreffler said.

Community help

Once the girls decided what they wanted to do, Schreffler knew they would need to use restaurant-quality equipment to make the lemonade, so she contacted Jill Younce, the owner of The Painted Lady Coffee House on Southeast Washington Street in Milwaukie.

“Jill likes working with the community, and she makes phenomenal lemonade. The idea was to teach the girls to make good-quality lemonade,” Schreffler said.

Younce added, “The Annie Ross House is an incredible organization, so I wanted to help.”

The process will begin with fresh lemons, which were donated to the girls; family members will purchase all the sugar, ice and plastic cups. Younce has access to frozen raspberries, so pink lemonade is on the menu, as are lemonade spritzers made with fizzy water.

The youngsters will set up their table at the NHA booth in the parking lot, where the farmers market is held on Sundays. This particular First Friday will include the diamond jubilee celebration of Milwaukie City Hall, so it is expected to be a larger-than-usual event, Schreffler said.

“The girls will make about 200 portions and will sell lemonade for $1.50 a glass. Mayor Ferguson has agreed to come and buy a glass,” she added.

For those who don’t want lemonade, but do want to help with the school-supply drive, the girls will accept cash donations at the stand, but also will have a barrel to collect school supplies, such as notebooks, folders and art supplies.

Schreffler added that the Riverside Elementary School staff has been supportive of the girls’ efforts, and some would be in attendance on First Friday.

Every little bit helps

Schreffler is no stranger to helping collect money and donations for the Annie Ross House, said Mallory Anderson, resource development coordinator for Northwest Housing Alternatives.

“Jody contacted us, and she has also worked with the Warrior Room, who are amazing supporters of ours. They have helped with the school-supply drive and have donated hygiene supplies and toys at holiday times. They are always willing to help out and go above and beyond,” Anderson said.

Drives like this “help immensely — getting our name out to the community. It is super important to us and to our families, just knowing that the community around them supports them when they need help,” Anderson said.

“It is events like these that remind us that there is a need. No matter how small the event — even $5 will make an impact,” Schreffler said.

“School supplies are so important, especially the first day of the school year,” in helping kids get off to a good start, Anderson said, adding that items most needed include notebooks, scissors, glue sticks, folders and binders.

Schreffler added that when she was talking to her daughter, she told her that all the money would be donated to an organization that helps kids who don’t have homes. “And she said, ‘How do kids get their homework done without homes?’"

Taking a stand

The lemonade stand will be in the parking lot where the Farmers Market takes place from 5 to 8 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 6. All proceeds will benefit the Annie Ross House. A collection barrel for school supplies also will be on-site.

School supplies also may be dropped off at The Painted Lady Coffee House, located at 2045 S.E. Washington St., Milwaukie.

For more information about Northwest Housing Alternatives, call Resource Development Director Tim Collier at 503-654-1007, ext. 113.

Send cash donations to: The Annie Ross House, 2316 S.E. Willard St., Milwaukie, OR 97222-7740, or visit nwhousing.org/donate/in-kind-donation.shtml to donate school supplies.

 




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