Since 1994, the Lower School has hosted a Read-a-Thon encouraging children to read, and teaching the importance of giving back to the community.
This year, the Baltimore Hunger Project (BHP) was chosen as the recipient of the proceeds. The boys learned about children living in Baltimore who may experience hunger, and how the smallest amount of money make a difference in those children’s lives.”I knew right away that BHP was a perfect match for the Lower School Read-a-Thon. We would be reading books and raising money to support children the same age as our students in schools close to Gilman. All our boys can understand that if you are hungry you will not have energy to play and learn,” said Lower School Head Armistead Webster.
“The Baltimore City and County Public School Systems do a magnificent job of feeding breakfast and lunch to kids Monday through Friday when school is in session. The problem, however, is that on weekends in some households, despite sometimes heroic work done by many local organizations, sufficient amounts of food are not available to the children,” said BHP founder Lynne B. Kahn. “That’s where Baltimore Hunger Project can help. By discretely tucking a weekend’s worth of food into backpacks on Fridays, we ensure otherwise hungry children are nourished and ready for school on Monday.”
The students and families connected with the mission of BHP. More than 90% of students participated, raising 18% more than last year. Their efforts raised $27,170!
“Here’s to the beginning of a wonderful relationship between Gilman’s Lower School and Baltimore Hunger Project,” Dr. Webster said.
The Read-a-Thon was personal for Ms. Kahn. Her son Max, now a senior, started in first grade at Gilman 12 years ago, and he was a consistent participant in the Read-A-Thon during his time in the Lower School.
Inspired by the boys, the Gilman Lower School faculty gave the gift of time. Sixteen faculty and staff members packed over 500 meals for distribution.
Pictured: Lisa Teeling, Katie Berman, Rakiya Brown, Ashley Dagenais, Tami James, Armistead Webster, Laura Jordan, Barry James, Lisa Shapiro, John Xanders, Marian Xanders, Erica Hudson, Meredith Miller, Tracie Long, Kaitlin Boswell, and Adam Herb
“We had a great time putting together 500 food packets for children in need…It was a fun, meaningful evening that we hope to do again!” said Laura Jordan, Lower School Counselor.
Our thanks to BHP Board Member Kris Groenke P’13 for this article.