Where Children Lead

Where Children Lead

FISH gains from youngsters' bake sale

Four third graders and one kindergartner from Clearview Elementary School recently raised $333 selling cookies and brownies to benefit Herndon-Reston FISH Inc.

Haley Disinger who likes to spend time at the beach with her friends, made posters for the bake-sale to catch the attention of Giant grocery shoppers passing the stand. "One is about a super fish," Haley said. Another poster read out the acronymic meaning of FISH, Friendly Instant Sympathetic Help. The slogan epitomizes the organization’s services of providing emergency money to residents in Herndon and Reston for rent, utility bills and prescription drugs.

Heather Youmans was able to contribute by providing cookies she baked with her mother despite a prior arrangement.

Then there were the Maxwell sisters, Allison, who has class with Haley and Heather, and her younger sister Erin. They baked brownies.

Allison, who loves to play the piano, described one donor and the infectious generosity of that Sunday. "There was one lady who didn’t have her purse, and she went to her car and she came back," Allison said. "I thought that was really nice of her."

Though the youngest at the age of six, Erin helped bake brownies with bigger sister Allison and their mom.

"We sold cookies to people, and they would, like, give us money for FISH," said Erin, a brownie in the Girl Scouts.

For many people $333 is not a lot of money.

To the beneficiaries of FISH’s services it can mean avoiding eviction, keeping the house warm another cold month or getting the next bottle of expensive medicine. To the children it provided experience, a sense of accomplishment and the simple joy of being with friends.

The organizer of the event was 9-year-old Ben Spector

who asked for permission to set up the bake sale stand. A "LEGO-lover" and Star Wars fan, he ran a lemonade-stand to raise money for FISH last year.