It is truly inspiring to see how one idea, put into action, can make a huge difference. Great ideas can come from anywhere – and all it takes is a group of dedicated people to turn these into reality. Last month, Dolphin Organics had the chance to witness a success story in the making: a group of third graders at Stony Point Elementary in North Rockland, NY who truly had the chance to learn about the tasks involved in running a business, and subsequently created a successful one of their own. Just a few years ago, founder of Dolphin Organics, Ayo Hart discussed how she began and runs her business with this class of third graders. This lesson plan inadvertently evolved into one of the most successful businesses I’ve ever come across, with 100% of its profits going to charity. And so, Team LaBier was born.
We began the day in the third grade classroom where it all began. By connecting with the students, Dolphin Organics was able to learn about how these CEOs, CFOs, COOs, etc. run their successful business. Several of the students hold positions in Team LaBier, such as the advertising team, financial team, research team, etc.
Class member Emma excitedly exclaimed “I’m a CEO!...There are different teams who are in charge of different things.” She discussed how the financial team helps to count the money, and the advertising team helps to make keychains. Each and every student has a place in the business where they can truly see their actions making a difference. By working together, this class was able to raise over $20,000 for local organization, Friends of Karen, and also Stand Up 2 Cancer.
The ceremony began with the teacher who started it all, Mrs. LaBier, who excitedly exclaimed the various successes of the team. From Sports Day, to the support of countless community members, Team LaBier has truly made an impact this year, and this breakfast helped to celebrate those who made it possible. Ms. LaBier and her students handed out various plaques to different businesses and people, all with a personal relation to either the students or the community. After watching an inspirational video on Stand Up 2 Cancer, it was clear to see just how personal this charity is to the community, along with Friends of Karen. In a world where so many are diagnosed with cancer, it is important to support charities like these that directly benefit cancer research and patients.
After the ceremony, I had the chance to sit down and talk to the amazing LaBier students. Most of them excitedly talked about Sports Day and how they individually called local businesses in order to find sponsors for the event. There was a huge turnout, and many of them excitedly remember the day and just what it meant for their team. One student Amara happily reflected on the fact that “the Sports Day money went to charity!” The students can truly see how their initiative and dedication can make a difference.
Team LaBier would not have been successful without Ms. LaBier herself, the teacher who propelled the students to action, Ayo Hart, with her business talk and sponsorship, and of course, the students themselves.
by Stefanie Kushner