The New Orleans Saints team cafeteria was a center of activity on Saturday, March 26 as over 100 volunteers were making preparations for South Louisiana Lemonade Day on May 7. Among the volunteers preparing for the event were adults and children as young as six years old, who will be participating in the event themselves.
By the end of the day the volunteers will have stuffed 5,500 backpacks full of information needed for the participating children to build their own lemonade stands and open for business on May 7. The backpacks will contain materials generously underwritten by this year's sponsors including the Saints.
Saints Owner/Executive Vice-President Rita Benson LeBlanc, who has pledged the club's support for the regionwide event, encouraged and congratulated volunteers, as well as helped them stuff the backpacks. Team ambassador Michael Lewis also appeared to help stuff as well as thank everybody for their commitment.
"This is going to be a great opportunity for the children in our region to learn about the concepts of entrepreneurship, including development and making, saving and donating money," said LeBlanc.
The most important part of this package are the educational workbooks that the children will use that will help them set up the stand and teach them about the recipes, costs, finances and hopefully profits involved.
While the purpose of "Lemonade Day" is to teach children basic lessons about money, finance and entrepreneurship, charity is another important component of the event. The children are encouraged to donate a portion of the proceeds to a cause or organization of their choice. Started in 2007 in Houston, the South Louisiana "Lemonade Day" in its first year is one of 28 participating locations around the country. In 2010, more than 67,000 youths from 14 cities sold $6.8 million dollars of lemonade and donated $2 million dollars to charities of their choices. For more information on participation in this event, visit www.lemonadeday.org and click on South Louisiana.