By Morgan Bryce
The Bulldog Cafe at Opelika High School was the sight of last week’s 2019 Philanthropy 101 Luncheon, hosted by members of the W. James Samford Foundation.
It marked the first time in the program’s history that students in Philanthropy 101 programs from both Auburn and Opelika high schools celebrated their accomplishments together.
“These students finished school, had a week of vacation, and came back to learn how to give with sweat equity as well as financially. They have been in school the past three weeks from 9 (a.m.) to 3 (p.m.),” said Philanthropy 101 Founder Lucinda Cannon. “They promised to be on time, learn about our nonprofits that (delve into) the fields of education, religion, health care, environment, the arts and social concerns.”
Each of the 18 students were required to present a slideshow about their chosen nonprofit partner and explain why they chose to volunteer there, what purpose the organization served, summarize its impact on their lives and discuss their organization’s future goals. Cannon added that each student received $1,200, with $700 of that to be allocated to their selected nonprofit partner.
There were a total of 13 Opelika students and five Auburn students. Following is a list of their names and nonprofit partners:
• Aaliyah Mason (Auburn), Ame Morgan (Opelika) and Dakaiya Ware (Auburn) – BigHouse Foundation
• Marshall Meyers and Katie Salinas (both Opelika) – Community Market
• Tori Slottke, Pilar McGuire (both Opelika) – Exceptional Foundation of East Alabama
• Shanecia Harvey, Gavin Williams (both Auburn) – Exodus Ranch
• Gabrielle Whack, Nakia Stinson (both Opelika) – Jean Dean RIF
• Julia Bush (Opelika), Raeden Gagliano (Opelika), Takhia Mims (Opelika) and Deasia Simmons (Auburn) – Miracle League of East Alabama
• Zeke Byrd and Jonathan Woods (both Opelika) – Storybook Farms.
This year’s Philanthropy 101 instructors were: Dr. Rebecca Brown, Hannah Holladay, Lillian Worley and Don Shirley.
For more information, visit www.ohs.opelikaschools.org.