Helping earthquake victims one glass of lemonade at a time

May 22 is International Lemonade Stand Day and proceeds will help victims of the Nepal earthquake

Megan Tibbles

Megan Tibbles

The dream of one Chilliwack family is that kids everywhere will be setting up lemonade stands to help earthquake victims in Nepal on Friday, May 22.

People will hopefully come out in droves to donate on the day they have designated as International Lemonade Stand Day, said organizer Cathy Tibbles.

A Chilliwack mom of three, Tibbles said it all started as a discussion around the dinner table, about the desperate state of earthquake victims in Nepal.

“At dinner, my 11-year-old offered $10 from her piggy bank. Not to be outdone, the eldest, postponing her cell phone purchase, offered $15.

“And Megan, my youngest, turned to me and asked for a lemonade stand.”

They’d been talking about a letter they’d received from World Vision outlining the urgent need in Nepal.

“Megan had been bugging me for a lemonade stand for more than a year.”

That was it.

She mulled over some charity ideas, and a way to maximize donations through matching them came to her.

“To encourage them along, my boyfriend and I have provided sponsorship through our companies to match all donations up to $900.”

The Canadian government will also be matching all donations to registered charities until May 25, Tibbles said.

“What this means is your little kiddos’ $10 in earnings will equal $40 in aid,” she wrote on the website.

The whole project serves as a valuable teaching tool for them.

“Children will learn that they too can make a difference,” said Tibbles.

Kids like hers, who go to Central Elementary, are sometimes on the receiving end of charity.

“But this makes it clear they can do stuff, too.”

When she asked her daughter, without prompting, how much she wanted to offer from the lemonade proceeds, the answer from nine-year-old Megan was: “All of it!”

Tibbles then contacted Mayor Sharon Gaetz to see if May 22 could be declared International Lemonade Stand Day at Chilliwack City Hall.

The reply from the mayor was: “City of Chilliwack Council appreciates and supports the effort made in this regard, and offers best wishes in achieving enormous success.

“Please let Megan know how very proud I am of her compassion and ingenuity!”

Register at http://www.facebook.com/IntlLemonade or call Tibbles at 604-703-8608 or go to: http://intllemonade.org/

jfeinberg@theprogress.com

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