Sunday, April 18, 2021
First-Graders Get Lesson in Philanthropy From 100 Men Who Care
Sunday, May 29, 2016


First-graders at Syringa Mountain School recently got a lesson in philanthropy—and an $8,150 check to boot!

Marty Lyon presented the check on behalf of 100 Men Who Care and took the opportunity to give the first-graders a short talk about philanthropy at the same time.

He asked the children if they knew anything about philanthropy. Then he told them he was there because he had started an organization called 100 Men Who Care—a men’s philanthropy group.

“How many of you know what philanthropy means?” he asked.

 No one seemed to know, even though a few of the children raised their hands.

“It means giving something to someone else,” Lyon told them. “And I’m here to give the school some money as a gift from 100 Men Who Care.”

He showed the kids a giant check printed on cardboard, eliciting “oohs” and “ahhs.”

 “I’m not sure if they even know what $8,150 is, but they seemed duly impressed, Lyon said later.

The children then lined up, each introducing himself or herself. Each shook his hand and thanked him for the gift.

“They were so cute--a grateful bunch. They were all so nice and polite—they’re clearly taught respect and manners, which is awesome,” said Lyon.

Lyon then got a tour of the school’s Farm and Garden beds and its playground, which boosts an amphitheater with seats and swings made out of logs.

“I’ve designed playgrounds and what’s so awesome about this playground is that it forces the kids to be the main characters, as opposed to engineered playground equipment that costs a thousand bucks or more. “It was incredible to see the innovation and hands-on instruction these kids get.”

Helene Mengert, development director for the Waldorf-inspired school, said the school had been trying to raise enough money to close the gap between the amount of funds given to the school by state and federal governments and the amount necessary to operate the tuition-free school. The gift from 100 Men accomplished that goal.

“Syringa is grateful for the gift,” said Bobbi Filbert, a member of Syringa Mountain School’s board. “100 Men Who Care is an amazing organization here in the valley and we are honored to have been chosen to be a recipient of their philanthropic work.”

The check means that 100 Men Who Care is getting ever closer to its goal of having at least 100 men who donate $100 four times a year to go to a nonprofit in the valley.

The organization launched with 16 men a few years ago. Since, it has donated $61,450 all told.

“This latest gift was once again a new high for us--$1,550 more than last quarter,” said Lyon, a landscape architect who co-founded the organization with his son.

The next meeting of 100 Men Who Care will be from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, July 12, at the Sawtooth Botanical Garden. Attendees will nominate nonprofits and pull three of those nominations out of a hat. The men who nominated the three picked will give a pitch and the men will vote on the one to donate July’s pooled donations to.

Men need not be present to donate.

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