By DAVID BORAKS
The community is responding to the technology challenge issued earlier this year by Davidson-based nonprofit E3D, which wants to put computers in the hands of local schoolkids who lack them. Organizer Pat Millen says help is coming in big and small ways – from community foundations and events like the Biggest Lemonade Stand Day Ever in Davidson Saturday.
|Mega Lemonade Stands
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Download a flier for the event (PDF).
Families around town are setting up neighborhood lemonade stands, and selling both cold drinks and the E3D (Ending Davidson’s Digital Divide) program which calls for buying computers for children in Davidson and Cornelius whose families can’t afford to keep up with the latest technology. The stands will be at locations from Community School of Davidson off Griffith Street to Roosevelt Wilson Park to the Village Green and River Run.
The suggested donation is $1 a cup, but there’s no limit.
“We would encourage grown-ups to grab a bunch of dollar bills and plan on visiting multiple stands, all in the name of raising money for the E3D,” Millen said.
The message is as important as the money, Millen said. “We expect to raise some money, but really this initiative is all about community engagement and community awareness,” he said.
CLOSING THE GAP
Ending Davidson’s Digital Divide started in February when Millen’s daughter Franny, a 12-year-old seventh grader at Bailey Middle School, began talking to her family about how some kids in her school didn’t have computers. It has blossomed into a nonprofit organization working closely with Davidson’s Ada Jenkins Center and other groups.
Those other groups include area nonprofits and foundations, which have been quick to lend a hand.
Millen estimates it will take about $15,000 to provide computers to Davidson Elementary School students whom the school has said would benefit from the program. Since it started, E3D has expanded its goal, and now also hopes to help families in need at elementary and middle schools in Cornelius.
Some other organizations that have chipped in recently:
- The Rotary Club of Davidson raised $500 at the May 11 Davidson Town Day, by raffling off a Samsung tablet computer. Ryan Gomella of Davidson won the tablet.
- The Peninsula Community Foundation has given E3D a check for $10,320. That gift came after Millen was invited to make a presentation to the foundation board by his former Davidson College college classmate, Todd Wiebusch.
- Donations have come in from both Davidson United Methodist Church and Davidson College Presbyterian Church.
- The Davidson Community Endowment Fund, a community trust founded in 1979, has given $10,000 to E3D. The trust funds projects that contribute to the long-term quality of life in town. It’s associated with the Endowment for the Carolinas. The fund’s trustees are the President of Davidson College (Carol Quillen), Davidson’s Vice President for Finance and Administration (Ed Kania), and an appointed Davidson resident (currently Lawrence Kimbrough).
WANT TO KNOW MORE?
See also our Feb. 27, 2013, feature, “E3D’s goal: Eliminate Davidson’s Digital Divide.”
April 25, 2013, Around Davidson column, “Good deed doers and dognition.”