As we end 2017 and look forward to 2018, we are taking a few moments to reflect on this year.
It was a little over a year ago that 10k Pencils received the State registration and was well on the way to becoming a registered 501(c)3. We have had many highs and some lows this year as we have continued our work but overall I am so thankful for the ability to make a difference in students lives through our organization.
Our biggest challenge was having to find a new shipping partner to get the school supplies to St Maurice in Zambia. After many months we were able to find another company to work with us to ship the supplies. We were eventually able to ship these in November. Approximately 1,000lbs of supplies will arrive in Zambia towards the end of January which is in time for the beginning of the new school year.
We have delivered about 2,000lbs of school supplies and clothing to The Malawi Project and they will be shipping these early in 2018 to be handed over to 2 schools in Malawi. This is a combined project with Monsanto whose employees will be coordinating arrangements locally in Malawi.
We have been able to do multiple smaller projects locally in St Louis with the Nahed Chapman Academy, the Ritenour School District, and the Sathya Sai organization. We were able to donate school supplies and clothing as needed.
Smaller International projects have included donations to schools in Mexico in partnership with Monsanto employees, donations to GiveJoy2One organization for children in Guatemala, and also the World Pediatric Project where children needing medical assistance have come to St Louis and needed warm clothing.
The question we are often asked is “how many children have you helped this year?”. It is difficult to quantify as one child may have needed a jacket, while another may have needed a full set of school supplies. I like to think of our help in this way – if we have helped a child in any way that they needed – be it with a pencil, a piece of paper, or clothing to keep warm, then we have met our goal of helping children in need to learn and thrive. However, for those who want a number, we estimate that our work this year, could impact more than 2,000 children at the schools in Zambia, Malawi, Mexico, and Guatemala.
Without the generosity of the donors to our organization, this work would not be possible. Firstly, to Parkway School District, especially the Principals from the Donor schools, as well as the Administration, our gratitude and thanks for supporting us and believing in the work we are doing to impact less fortunate learners. To the parents and teachers at our donor schools, thank you for your donations of time, supplies and entrusting us to deliver on our commitment to learners globally. To friends and family for donations, volunteering hours, and general encouragement, thank you.
To Cris and Claudia, who have been the greatest supporters, along with their families, I thank you and I look forward to what 2018 will bring and the impact we can make around the world with our partners!
Best wishes to all for 2018!