Greencastle students sell bracelets to benefit Nicaraguan youth

November 16, 2011|By ROXANN MILLER |
  • Members of the Greencastle-Antrim High School Spanish Honor Society Hunter Rodgers, junior; Cory Bontrager, junior; Jacob Warren, junior; Cassidy Zimmerman, junior; Logan Zehrung, junior; Patti Kotrady, senior; Zaira Gomez, senior; Courtney Campbell, senior; Sabrina Smith, senior; Amanda Martin, junior; and Blair Boscolo, junior.
Photo by Roxann Miller, Staff Writer

GREENCASTLE, Pa. — One Franklin County school has discovered that it only takes $5 to make a huge difference in someone's life.

Greencastle-Antrim High School Spanish National Honor Society students embarked on a service project to empower underprivileged Nicaraguan children.

Group adviser Nicole Paci-Funk chose the Pulsera Project to help the former street children of the Central American country. (Pulsera means bracelet in Spanish.)

Last month, Greencastle student sold more than 300 of the colorful, hand-woven bracelets at $5 apiece, raising $1,645 for the Pulsera Project.

Paci-Funk wanted to find a service project for the GAHS Spanish Honor Society and stumbled across Pulsera.

"For every 10 bracelets that we sold, one Nicaraguan youth was able to attend college for a month," Paci-Funk said.

"That's just amazing," she said.

Greencastle-Antrim is the only school in the area, including Franklin and Washington counties, to partner with the nonprofit organization.

"They (the Spanish Honor Society students) feel really good that they are helping people their age someplace else and go to school," Paci-Funk said.

Since the first school participated in 2009, U.S. student volunteers in more than 140 schools have sold roughly 70,000 pulseras and have raised more than $300,000 dollars for Nicaragua, according to the Pulsera Project website.

Blair Boscolo, a junior, bought two bracelets for herself and two for her sister.

"This was a good fundraiser and it would be a good annual fundraiser because they (GAHS students) get a really nice product, and they are also helping a great cause at the same time," Boscolo said.

The fundraiser made her thankful for the accessibility of education in her community.

"These kids are very talented and they don't have the money to move forward in their life like they wish to. So by doing this fundraiser we are giving them the funds that they need to progress and to fulfill their talents," Boscolo said.

Junior Hunter Rodgers wore his bracelet on his wrist.

"It benefits a good cause and I learned there are a lot of talented kids who are undermined by poverty," Rodgers said.

Cassidy Zimmerman, a G-AHS junior, plans to attend college after graduation.

But, it saddens her that many Nicaraguan youth don't have that same opportunity.

She wears her bracelet almost every day hoping that one day, education will be possible for everyone.

"It makes me grateful that we have a system that enables me to pursue my education," Zimmerman said.

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