Spring Philanthro-Party Cooking Demo!

This beautiful spring afternoon PhilanthroParty combined organic gardening, conscientious cooking, a documentary,  and feeding the needy.   Here's the recipe! 1. Take a top local chef, Matt from Heirloom LA,  who donated his time, talent,  home-grown veggies... and 4 entirely WHOLE, lovingly raised chickens. To prepare us for a meal we will cook and serve at a homeless shelter, he taught  a bunch of us LemonAID Warriors how to cook  a healthy meal.

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Screen Shot 2014-03-19 at 11.57.18 PM

2. Mix in a trip to Jasper's garden, grown courtesy of Katies Krops  for  Matt's tips about growing food that will eventually feed the hungry in our community.

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Screen Shot 2014-03-10 at 9.41.21 AM

3. Top with  beautiful table decorations gathered from our yard and hand made napkins ( a special thank you to our newest Warrior, the compassionate and creative Juliet!)

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Screen Shot 2014-03-09 at 11.43.53 PM

4. Serve and EAT with the Webb Family who cook with us and film the day as part of their youth activism documentary called One Year Road Trip.  

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Screen Shot 2014-03-10 at 9.42.21 AM
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6. This recipe and Matt's lessons will keep fresh in our minds till we recreate this meal and use our new cooking skills to feed the (formerly) homeless Easter Brunch at PATH.

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With Easter approaching, Warrior, AVA through a PhilanthroParty for the 10th birthday. Click here to learn about AVA!   Instead of presents, she asked for donations to our local grocery store so we could buy the ingredients to cook this meal for LemonAID Warrior's Easter Brunch at PATH homeless Shelter.

ava and homa
ava and homa

The final pay-off of this PhilanthroParty was when we put our cooking lessons to work !  We through an Easter Brunch Party where we fed 60 homeless residents of PATH shelter in downtown Los Angeles.

Thanks to AVA, LemonAID Warriors were able to feed 60 residents at our Easter Brunch at PATH homeless shelter.
Thanks to AVA, LemonAID Warriors were able to feed 60 residents at our Easter Brunch at PATH homeless shelter.

Nicholas is our Warrior of the Week!

NIcholas' philanthroparty 2 Turing 6 is a big deal. It's when a kid turns into a big-kid.  And Nicholas is a big-kid with a big heart.  "My little sister needed to go to Sick Kids Hospital a few times so ... I chose to make donations there." He donated around $200.00 so far.  Nicholas and his friends played Limbo and Nicholas-Says and then had a cooking class and made pizza, even the dough.  The "giving" part of the party "made it just as fun" as a regular party and Nicholas wants to do it again!

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Easy Valentines Philanthro-Party

Maddy, LemonAID Warrior's Vice President co-creates exciting creative Philanthro-Parties with me.  We meet often to plan them and then test them out with her friends.  You can use my planning tips to help get you started. We met on Sunday and decided the birthday philanthro-party she threw in June would also make a great Valentines party... IMG_4116

Maddy's passion is to help kids with cancer so she met with a representative for pediatric cancer at USC  to research her cause. I introduced her to an organization run by a young girl Jen Rubino, called Cards For Hospitalized Kids, which distributes cards to sick children.  For the party we set up a card making station, and lemonade, of course!

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You can also make crafty cards for seniors or  war veterans who could use some Valentines cheer.  Or Click here to download   instructions on the right things to say if you are sending a card to someone in the hospital.  

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In keeping with the arts and crafts theme, you can also ask your guests if they would like to bring  art supplies to donate to a children's hospital. Perfect for birthday or Valentines parties!

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At the end of the day we had 36 cards and a pile of donations.  Happy Valentines philanthro-partying!!!

 

 

 

 

MLK at Buckley School!

I spent Martin Luther King Jr Day with 250 amazing kids and parents from the Buckley school. I shared my action plans and talked about my work in Africa.  98 families pledged philanthro-parties.  I am so grateful for the chance to share my work.I had an art project where 110 kids drew self portraits on lemons for a chance to win a basket of goodies. And we have a winner…..Connor G. 5th Grade!

Spotlight Warrior: Matthew Navarro

There's a theme among my favorite Warriors.  They've used the obstacles in their lives as platforms for change.  Like my friend Kendall, who fought her illness by concentrating on other people's needs.  Click here for her awesome TEDx talk.   Matthew is another great example.  He wears glasses  and  can't imagine his life without them. He expresses his gratitude by showing a deep compassion for those are not as fortunate.  Matthew asked me for a few tips on getting started on turning this compassion into action.  And in a few short months I am blown away by what he has accomplished.  I have never seen a Warrior work so fast and so effectively.  Please support him and share his story.

PassItOn4Eyesight Facebook Website

5 seconds of silliness with me and Matthew and our friends.

Kendall's TEDx Talk

 

 

MLK Day at The Buckley School

To honor Dr. King, my Day of Service is being spent with The Buckley School's K - 5th grade Warriors!  I'm sharing LemonAID Warrior's PhilanthroParty action plans and talking about my passion for our friends in Africa.  Check out our art project  I'm using these photos and videos to tell my story

First LemonAID Stands

 First lemonade stand

First lemonade stand

My discovery of the power of a single cup of lemonade to save a life.

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Screen Shot 2014-01-17 at 1.33.01 PM

Watch the video!

Birthday PhilanthroParties are LemonAID Warrior's most popular events.  Ask for donations instead of presents or choose a party theme around a cause you love.  If you love puppies, have animal cake and decorations and ask for old towels and blankets to donate to shelters to keep the dogs warm.  If you love football, then maybe you can play flag football at your party, and  ask your guests to bring sports shoes or cleats they have grown out of to donate to a boys shelter where they always need athletic gear.  Guest can choose to spend the money they would have on your present and take that same money and make a donation to the boys shelter or the animal shelter instead.

Here is my annual Water Walk Birthday PhilanthroParty.  I'm 14 and this will be my 4th one. Its so much fun.  We have a huge party after our water walk and I ask for donations instead of presents.

 

PhilanthroParties don't have to be about raising money.  There are skills you have that are really valuable that can help a lot of people.  For example, here are some warriors who love to sing.  So they practice 5 songs and then we visit senior homes and sing for old people who dont get a lot of visitors.  Then we stay for tea and snacks and have a visit.

Wyatt Workman
Wyatt Workman

This is Wyatt.  He loves art.  At summer camp he and his friends wrote a story and  drew pictures about how the trash monster is ruining the ocean.  Then they made a book about it and a claymation movie.  The book is now at his school library, where kids can learn about saving the ocean.  He also sells it and has raised $6000.00. And his movie is shown on youtube and in schools to spread awareness for his passion which is the ocean.

Below was just a summer day when we were bored so we turned it into a little philanthroparty.  We went to the animal shelter, gave some love to some animals and then took photos of the animals and learned how to network them on facebook to try to find them homes.  My friend Mike filmed it and one day I want to make a movie about it,like Wyatt did.  To show kids how they can help animals.

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ANd this is Brynn, who is an amazing artist.  She ran this art workshop for kids at an art charity event.  She did art with the kids and took care of them so the parents could go to the charity fund raiser. She also took donations for teaching them.

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Screen Shot 2014-01-17 at 3.07.19 PM

Borrow this LemonAID Stand for our cause!!

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rock the run copy
Picture 15
Picture 15

Meet Memphis LemonAID Warriors

This brother-sister dynamic duo inspire me in so many ways, I don't know where to start.  They have taken the core ideas of being a LemonAID Warrior and put it into full force with hard work, a joyful spirit and a clear determination.  Their PhilanthroParty events are creating results that are saving lives.  They are working together as a family and strengthening family bonds.  They are engaging their community.  And they are inspiring me to put more energy into reaching more kids because if we can create an army of Warriors like Lauren and Collin, then the peaceful world I imagine has a chance of becoming real. THANK YOU Lauren and Collin.  Support their causes at Project Orphans, St Judes and Blood Water Mission!

The REAL reason African girls stop going to school...

I visited a well on a campus in Uganda that was built by the partners I support with my fund raisers.I expected to hear that girl’s attendance was on the rise since they no longer had to miss school to walk miles to fetch water for their families.But I was sad to learn that girls over 11 were still dropping out.The reason shocked me. Alice, the principal of the school, said that a girl stops going to school when she gets her period.The lack of sanitary products, latrines, privacy and washing areas were to blame.I realized it was not enough to just bring clean water.

My partners on the ground in Uganda, Divine Waters, realized that too.  So, they started a hygiene club after school where girls would get together and sew reusable pads.They made a cloth sheath from scraps.It had a cloth belt that buttoned to secure it around the undergarments.Inside was a layer of plastic and a layer of towel-like fabric.Alice had a big wooden box with dozens of these that the girls made in the club. The girls were very excited to show me what they made and not embarrassed at all. They were going home and showing their mothers and aunties how to make them too. Since there is no money for a proper latrine, a tippy tap and a tent was set-aside on campus for the girls.And…teen girl’s attendance is finally on the rise!

There is NO access or funds for disposable sanitary products. Its totally unrealistic.  So, this is a simple, sustainable solution has become an effective part of my partner’s outreach program.My Back to School Fund-Matching Campaign will help fund sanitation education, like the one I visited in Uganda.I reached my goal of $20,000.00 and this money will help me dig deeper than a well! THANK YOU for supporting it. Water is just the beginning.It is important to ask “what’s next!”Alice and her students helped me see the next step that is needed to empower these girls to lift themselves out of poverty.

LemonAID Warriors in AFRICA!!

Ever since I saw Lion King when I was 3 years old, I have been in love with Africa. When I found out the people there were among the neediest people in the world, I knew I wanted to help and decided to start by trying to meet their most basic need: Water.  This summer I had the honor of visiting some of the water projects I have helped fund in the most northern regions of Uganda. I met the local people who built and maintain the water projects we have helped to fund. I promised to relay their message--"Send your warriors our greetings and thank them for caring about people they have never even met." I'm deeply inspired by the dignity, graciousness and hard work they put into caring for these wells so they can stand on their own.

Thank you Warriors!  This summer I visited the remotest areas of northern Uganda where I saw the water projects we helped to fund and I met the local people who build and maintain these life-saving wells.  They asked me to "send their greetings and thanks to all of you who care about us even though you have never met us".

Natalie and Justin's Halloween PhilanthroParty!

LemonAID Warriors:Canada has new Warriors to cheer!  When Natalie learned about our Philanthro-Parties she recruited her little brother Justin and made the sweetest holiday of the year even sweeter! Here's what she has to say about her Halloween Costume Philapthro-Party... "We had games, we had bags with our names and put prizes in the bags, we watched a movie. We dressed in costumes and we had fun."  We collected " 4 bags of clothes and 76 cans of food...we counted them on the porch and put them in our wagon" We gave to St Vincent de Paul and The Oakville Fair Share Food Bank "so kids would be warm and not hungry. It was easy to ask my friends to help.  They were showing God's love."

They would like to do another philanthro-party "because we have fun and we get to help people.  Maybe we could have our friends bring toys and we could bring them to kids who spend Christmas in the hospital,"

These young warriors are already  thoughtful and compassionate leaders in their their community.  Share their story and inspire an army of young Warriors to  follow their  lead. A Simple Sweet Social way to Share!

 Natalie and Justin's PhilanthroParty

Natalie and Justin's PhilanthroParty

ABC Summer of Service Grant

Thanks to Youth Service America, I found out about this grant.  I have applied for their grants before without luck but after my amazing summer in Africa, I figured I had a better chance.  It worked!  I am so excited to use this grant in a creative way!  Usually I just donate prize money to my partners.  But I feel a responsibility to use this grant to grow my Water Walk 2014 and engage more kids in my community.  YSA is all about engaging youth so I want to honor them by combining my passion projects with their goals.  Stay tuned while I figure out how to get the most mileage from this very generous grant! Screen Shot 2013-10-22 at 1.33.41 AM

The Gloria Barron Prize for Young Heroes

I am deeply honored to receive this award, along with 12 other youth activists.  Gloria Barron lived a life of service and her son is carrying on her legacy by empowering a new generation of activists.  I am donating my prize money to support sustainable solutions to the water crisis in Africa.  This donation will help generations of Africans lift themselves out of poverty by taking the first steps toward a healthy tomorrow.  Please read about the other 2013 winners of this prize and the amazing work they are doing. Share their stories! Screen Shot 2013-10-22 at 1.25.35 AM

ShredKids Cancer's Rock the Run!

There are SO many Action Heroes to thank from this event.  Teagan, Paulie and Kaitlin and LemonAID Warriors volunteers!  I was honored to partner with you all at Teagan's Rock the Run 5k and 10K event to raise money for pediatric cancer research.  We unveiled our new Extreme LemonAID Stand built and donated by the amazing carpenter/host of Extreme Makeover Home Edition, Paul DiMeo.  We met the amazing Kaitlin, this years honorary Shred Head whose smile lit up the day.  LemonAID Warriors sold our famous Watermelon LemonAID  and  ran in the race.  See you next year, Teagan!  WE LOVE what you do. rock the run copy

This EXTREME LEMONAID STAND CAN BE YOURS!!!

If you live in the LA area and want to borrow my amazing LemonAID Stand for your philanthro-party to raise funds or awareness for you passion project, email me!!  Seriously!  Extreme Makeover Home Editions host/builder, Paul DiMeo built me the LemonAID Stand of my dreams.  He attended our HANSON GIVES A DAM concert and was inspired to help me in my quest to give clean water to our friends in Africa.  But this stand is SO awesome, I want to share it with my Los Angeles Warriors to help their causes.  The chalk board header makes it easy to write in your cause and advertise what you are selling or sharing.  Its easy to assemble and I will personally deliver it to your event! LW group @ Rock the Run copy

Spotlight Warrior: Caroline of Uganda

Caroline welcomed us into her homestead in northern Uganda so we could see how access to clean water has helped her family and her village take an important first step toward saving lives from water born diseases.  But it was just the first step.  She taught me that sanitation education and a simple "tippy tap" have saved even more lives and created a healthier community that is getting strong enough to lift themselves out of poverty.  School attendance has gone up because kids are not missing school due to illness.  This simple device is having a huge impact. Caroline's dedication to implementing these hygiene practices in her homestead make her a hero to her family while she is setting an example to her community. My partners in Uganda, Divine Waters, and my partners in the US, Blood Water Mission, continue their health education program as part of their sustainable program that goes beyond building wells. Share this story to raise awareness.  Or make a donation HERE to support these efforts.


READ ABOUT JASPER'S TRIP TO UGANDA! I have been helping Lulu raise money and awareness for the water crisis in Africa.  Here is a video of her Water Walk that I am in.  It raised enough money to build a well that will serve 400 villagers for life.

She invited me to go to Uganda to visit some of her projects. We were going very far north where there was a terrible war for 20 years.  The children were taken to be soldiers and slaves or put into camps.  The war ended and there is peace now but these villages had to start over.  No water.  No electricity.  No roads.  No hospitals.  Just bush and mud huts.  I expected really sad and helpless people.  I expected that they would look at me and feel more depressed because I have so much and they have nothing at all.  I expected they might be angry or jealous or that they might beg for things they need. But I was compleltely wrong.    Here is what I saw instead.

This is me and our friend Micah.  We brought a soccer ball to a school where a well was built this year.  Everywhere we went, we played soccer or frisbee or dodgeball.  And we immediately made friends.  It didn't matter that we didnt speak the same language or we had totally different lives.  When we played together it was as if we were all the same and as if we had been friends for a long time.Soccer ball in Africa with Jasper

Jasper's Summer Service Projects

PEACE IS POSSIBLE IF BASIC HUMAN NEEDS ARE MET.  This quote by Mattie JT Stepanek inspires us LemonAID Warriors every day. Jasper spent an amazing summer addressing the basic human need for FOOD and WATER.  Here is his story in his words!FOOD:  I applied for a grant from Katies Krops to grow a garden and feed the hungry in Los Angeles. I teamed up with another LemonAID Warrior, my friend Nicholas. He invited his grandpa Maurice to mentor us.  The grant came through!!  Thanks KATIE!!  Follow our story.  Here is part ONE of our four-part video blog.  Introducing...Krop Club LA!


WATER: In June I went to Uganda with Blood Water Mission.  I helped my sister fundraise to build wells in Africa with them since we were little.  We visited wells in villages, schools and medical clinics.  After a 23 hour plane flight, we drove to the very north of Uganda.  Our wells were built way up there because thats where they need it the most.  But it's dangerous because the roads are bad.  Here's a picture of the car I was in after it swerved into a ditch and flipped three times.  It was the most scared I've ever been in my life but I'm thankful I'm alive and no one was hurt.  After that we were thinking we should go home.  But I decided I would be OK to tough it out.  I wanted to meet the people we came to visit.

I'm so glad I toughed it out.  I met the most amazing people.  At first I was afraid I'd just be sad the whole trip. I'd feel bad  because I have way more than I need and it would be hard to meet poor people who are depressed and hopeless.   But I was wrong.   They were actually even more poor than I imagined. They had no shoes, torn clothes, clay houses with no toilets or electricity.  They had to dig for their food and walk miles to schools that had no desks.   But even though they were this poor, they were the happiest people I ever met.  They had their family. They had their community and school.  And they had a well that brought them clean water so they could be healthy.  The well gave them hope for a better life and I think it's the hope that made them happy even if they had nothing else.  They looked at me like a person who brought hope.  Not like a person who is selfish.  They didn't beg or ask me for things.  They just wanted me to tell their story when I got home.


We asked them how the well made their life better.  They said kids now get to go to school instead of walking miles a day to fetch dirty water that made them sick or killed them.  And now there are lessdeaths and sicknesses from cholera, diarrhea and dysentery but there were still people dying from these diseases.  Mostly kids under 5.  That was disappointing. These diseases are from germs in dirty water and our partners thought that a well with clean water would totally fix it. But kids were still dying so they needed more solutions.

I thought a solution would be to build a hospital, but that would take years and millions of dollars and so many kids would die in the meantime. But our partners had an idea to help immediately.  They started educating the villages and schools about sanitation. They taught the villagers how to build these Tippy Taps and taught about proper hand-washing.  Already it's making a huge difference. And it didn't cost money or take a long time to put up. Sicknesses and death rates are now dropping fast and school attendance is going up.  Here's a Tippy Tap picture. This simple thing lets people wash their hands and actually saves lives.

The highlight for me was becoming friends with Micah, who traveled with us from Nashville, and playing with Micah and the kids we met in Uganda.   Micah and I had nothing in common with them at all.  We didn't even speak the same language. But it felt like we knew each other forever.  All it took was a soccer ball to make things fun and we had a great time.  Every place we went, we got some kind of game going.  We were all friends.  It was so easy and so fun.

Here's the most important thing I saw.  People need the basics to live a healthy life.  Water.  Food.  Medical care.  People need hope.  They need family, friends and community.  And if that is all they have, then it is possible to be truly happy.  I'm going to keep helping them get what they need so they can eventually take care of themselves.  And I am going be much more grateful for my life.  I'm going to remember the feeling of friendship and happiness that can happen when strangers from opposite sides of the world get together with nothing in common but a soccer ball.

Montage Humanitarian Award

It so amazing to me that there are big companies out there who are interested in the work of youth philanthropists.  The Montage Memory Makers Humanitarian Award honors 5 young change makers every year and I am so honored to be included in such impressive company.  Their recognition makes me want to work harder to live up to the ideals that they have chosen me to represent.  To all the Warriors out there, I would be so happy to nominate you next year, if you contact me and share your work on my site.