The Hearthstone School community, with the help of friends and businesses in the area, collected 39,318 pennies to donate to Pennies for Peace.
The fourth-grade class took the pennies to Union First Market Bank, where the bank tallied the total amount of change at $393.18, free of charge. The school then donated the total to the Pennies for Peace campaign, which is a school program created by the Central Asia Institute in Bozeman, Mont.
The Pennies for Peace program started after Greg Mortenson traveled to Pakistan and promised to return to build a school. He decided to promote peace by building schools for boys and girls in central Asia. He wrote a book about his mission titled “Three Cups of Tea.”
The money collected by Hearthstone students is enough to provide school supplies to five students for a year, and enough for one advanced student’s annual scholarship.
The Hearthstone community thanks the area businesses that served as collection centers for the school’s penny drive — Shaw’s Services, the Sperryville Corner Store, the Rappahannock Library, Country Cafe, Griffin Tavern, Oldway Arts Center, Rainbow Market, Union First Market Bank, Hackley’s Store, Schnabel Engineering (Charlottesville) and Whitley Mortgage (Monroe, N.C.). As Mortenson and many others of central Asia say, asalaam alaikum — peace be with you!
Elizabeth Shaw, teacher