SCS students fundraise for OFES

From left: Ten-year-old Oscar Ewald and Jackson Neme present Craig Newman with money they raised for the Outreach for Earth Stewardship at Shelburne Farms on Thursday, Oct. 11. The SCS students are trying to raise $1,000 for the non-profit organization by Nov. 1 to earn a matching grant.

Outreach for Earth Stewardship (OFES) is a small non-profit organization established in 1989 that takes in injured raptors (such as hawks, falcons, kestrels, and owls), nurses them back to health, releases them back into the wild when possible, cares for those who cannot be released, and provides educational programs and camps for.

OFES’s aviaries and educational facility are based on Shelburne Farms since their partnership was created in 1997. Many Shelburne children have participated in their wonderful summer camps and in fact that’s what inspired Shelburne Community School (SCS) students Jackson Neme and Oscar Ewald’s love of raptors.

The organization is currently attempting to raise $1,000 or more by Nov. 1 in order to earn a matching grant from The Morris and Bessie Altman Foundation of Shelburne. The funds will be used to construct new aviaries to house OFES’s ever-increasing volume of birds.

When Neme and Ewald learned of this effort, they decided to hold a bake sale to raise money. Both boys have been volunteering at the aviaries and regularly help feed the raptors. With a little bit of help from their parents, the two boys baked a variety of goodies–cookies, cupcakes, pies, lemon and raspberry bars –and sold them at a table outside the Friends of Pierson Library Book Sale on Oct. 6. That sale was a huge success in both earning money and informing the public about OFES. The two boys earned nearly $250 from the bake sale alone. They then decided to donate more of their own money, which their parents agreed to match, and also got the support of Neme’s teacher.

On Thursday, Oct. 11, the pair presented Craig Newman of OFES with the cash and several checks totaling nearly $400. This incredible amount was a complete surprise to Newman, who mentioned their efforts alone had raised more than all other contributions this month combined.

Inspired to give? Donations by check should be made payable to OFES and sent to Outreach for Earth Stewardship, 1611 Harbor Road, Shelburne, VT 05482.

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