Catholic Central students have given $1,000 to the Springfield Soup Kitchen and want to give the same amount to a local organization that serves at-risk youths.
The students discovered the needs of the soup kitchen and On-the-Rise, an organization on a farm that serves at-risk youths in Clark County, while participating in a philanthropic education course called Magnified Giving.
Marcia Roth, the service coordinator at the school, said the class began in November and has a total of 13 students.
Roth said the students received 14 grant applications from area nonprofits, but ultimately decided to help the soup kitchen and On-the-Rise.
“Some of the benefits have been that it has made students aware of the most serious issues that face our community,” Roth said. “I think they also came away with how problems in Springfield can be addressed.”
Catholic Central is one of 52 schools in southwestern Ohio and Kentucky that offer the Magnified Giving program.
Magnified Giving was founded in 2008 by Roger Grein, an active philanthropist in the Greater Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky area.
After having success with philanthropic education at the college level, Grein decided he wanted to give high school students the opportunity to learn how to become philanthropists.
The program is now in dozens of schools in the Cincinnati area and is also available in schools in Montgomery and Butler counties. About 2,500 students participate in the program.
So far, the students have raised more than $600 for On-the Rise and hope a fundraiser between classrooms will help them reach their goal, Liz Heck, a sophomore at Catholic Central.
Heck said the program has opened her eyes about area nonprofits and the impact volunteers and donors can have on people in need.
“I didn’t realize how many people were out there helping others,” Heck said.
“Just to know we made a difference gave us the motivation to want to continue. I want to try volunteering again,” Heck said.
Doug Heeston, director of development for Magnified Giving, based in Cincinnati, said students who participate in the class learn about nonprofits in their communities and how they help communities live and work.
Heeston said officials are gathering data to see how the program effects students down the road.
He said students say the program has had an impact on them.
Heeston said he recalls one student said he used to worry about how much homework he had, but now understands there are people in his community without food or shelter.
“They’re getting a dose of real life,” Heeston said.