Thanks to the ingenuity, support and generosity of the directors, instructors and students of the 2010 Texas School, PPA Charities succeeded in raising $24,000 for our charitable partner, Operation Smile, far surpassing last year’s outstanding Texas School donation of $17,000.
How It All Got Started . . .
Texas School is the largest of all PPA Affiliate Schools in the country, and this year the week-long event drew over 1,000 students from throughout the U.S. and abroad. The tradition of PPA Charities fundraising at Texas School began spontaneously in 2008, when a few instructors, who were familiar with PPACH’s support Operation Smile, encouraged their class members to donate. This effort culminated at the Thursday evening all-school party when school director Don Dixon offered to shave his head if the donation could grow to $5000. It did, and Don lost his hair!
In 2009, Texas School instructors encouraged their classes to buy as many smiles as they could by playing an Operation Smile video so that students could learn how this organization’s incredible volunteers can perform life-changing surgery for a desperately needy child for only $240. Jed and Vicki Taufer’s class alone donated an amazing $7,300 for individual contributions and auctions of merchandise and private classes by Jed and Vicki. Their donation, along with those from other classes, along with an impromptu auction of donated vendor items, resulted in a $17,000 contribution to Operation Smile!
A Texas School Tradition
With the 2009 donation, which represents 70 smiles, two years of impromptu acts of generosity at Texas School toward PPA Charities have created what is now a Texas School tradition! So for 2010, each class was challenged to help PPA Charities by raising enough so that we could donate at least two smiles ($480) to Operation Smile. With 33 classes at the school, we hoped to come close to the 2009 donation of $17,000. To generate additional excitement, PPACH offered a full Texas School scholarship to be given out to a member of the class that raised the most, as well as a scholarship to “Chicks Who Click” for every $1000 raised by each class.
100 Smiles for 2010!
We were amazed and astounded at the effort some of the classes made; only a few raised less than $100, and, remarkably, Helen Yancy’s class raised $4,000 by holding a raffle for a fine art print created by Richard Sturdevant, shown at left (see Richard’s fabulous print up close on the homepage of his website). Most attendees were involved at some point, which made it fun for Texas School and very rewarding for PPACH. In the end, we raised over $24,000 . . . 100 smiles!
PPACH Executive Director Bert Behnke was on hand at the school’s trade show so that he could provide information on PPACH and PPA to attendees.
Thanks to Texas School for their incredible leadership on behalf of PPA Charities; we can’t wait for the 2011 edition of Texas School, which will be held in Dallas on May 1-6, 2011! For information on Texas School, click here.