With the goal to raise over $12,000 in four weeks as part of the Pennies for Patients fundraiser, not only did Desert View Academy blow the top off their own goal, but they also surpassed the fundraising amount of any other school in Arizona that participated.
At a grand total of $12,583.38, the school was named the Pennies Hero for the 2012-2013 school year for the dollars that they raised for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society (LLS), a nonprofit health organization that funds blood cancer research and provides services and support to leukemia, lymphoma and myeloma patients and their loved ones.
"We were so excited to find out that DVA, which is a very small school – 500 students – was the top fundraising school in all of Arizona, that was just very exciting news," said Principal Deb Weigel.
She shared that the school has raised over $62,000 since the school began participating in the fundraiser in 2004.
"That is just incredible, for a school of our size in Yuma," Weigel said. "What we tell our students is that, ‘You can make a difference, you can change lives. You can make a difference, just a penny at a time...’ Our students realize that we are making a huge difference, so it’s very exciting to see this continue on, our legacy."
As a school of character, she said they make sure to teach students to give and think of others.
"We always talk about treating others the way we want to be treated, but this shows that we went above and beyond," said Weigel.
She added that at this point she is not sure what their fundraising goal will be for next year.
"I don’t know what our goal will be, but it will be large and I’m sure we’ll reach it," she said.