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Wolf Conservation Center: Common Cents: Empowering Kids to Make Change

Health & Wellness  (tags: Wolves, Children, New York, protection, animals, animaladvocates, AnimalWelfare, wildanimals, wildlife, GoodNews, endangered, environment, humans, investigation, society, rescued, goodnews, conservation, interesting, protection, risks, safety, women, study )

- 1732 days ago -
By providing science-based education programming with Ambassador wolves, not only are we helping to dispel the harmful untruths about wolves, we're also improving our efforts to successfully restore endangered wolves to their ancestral homes in the wild.

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Roxie H (350)
Wednesday July 24, 2013, 3:50 am
As an environmental education organization, the Wolf Conservation Center (WCC) strives to promote wolf conservation by teaching about wolves, their relationship to the environment, and the human role in protecting their future. By providing science-based education programming with Ambassador wolves, not only are we helping to dispel the harmful untruths about wolves, we're also improving our efforts to successfully restore endangered wolves to their ancestral homes in the wild. It's a marriage really, of education and conservation.

Through wolves, however, we aim not only to improve our recovery goals, we also strive to teach the broader message of conservation and one's personal responsibility for improved human stewardship of our World. We extend education programming always with the effort to link the wolf to global issues and empower our participants with the understanding of their ability to force change. Perhaps this is why it's is so exciting to see the how the Common Cent's Penny Harvest program is granting youngsters with the ability to change the world by introducing them to the power of philanthropy and service.

The great middle school students of PS 144Q from Forest Hills, NY participated in a democratic process to choose a charity to support and the WCC was blessed to among the chosen! So it is our pleasure to send LOUD howls of gratitude to these pint-sized philanthropists. With kids like these, the future is looking bright.

To learn more about Common Cents and their exciting service-learning programs for young people, please visit their website at



We are an educational, not-for-profit organization, which specializes in creating and managing service-learning programs for young people. Our most popular and best known program is the Penny Harvest, the largest child philanthropy program in the United States.

Other Common Cents programs include the Student Community Action Fund, our high school leadership council, and Near Peer, our mentoring program. See our mission statement and learn more about service-learning.

Common Cents grew from the desire of a four-year-old (our Co-Founder, Nora Gross) to feed a homeless man in 1991. That need led her to ask her father (Teddy Gross, our other Co-Founder and our Executive Director) how she could help. His quest to answer that question gave birth to Common Cents and the Penny Harvest. Read the full story in Noraís own words.

Since 1991, children between the ages of four and 14 have been converting their natural compassion for others into action by collecting pennies and turning those pennies into grants for community organizations. The Penny Harvest shows young people they have the ability to change the world by introducing them to the power of philanthropy and service during their formative years. As children help others, they develop their generosity and moral character, and they learn through practice the skills and responsibilities of democratic participation. Learn all about the Penny Harvest.

During the 2009/2010 school year, almost 300,000 children from 920 schools in New York City and across the country took part in the Penny Harvest, collecting $756,273 in pennies. After months of research and study, students made hundreds of monetary grants to non-profits, such as womenís shelters, animal rights organizations, community gardens and senior centers, and carried out neighborhood service projects. Every penny collected went back to the community.

Common Cents partners with organizations across the country to bring the Penny Harvest to students in the Capital Region of NY, Colorado, Florida, Ohio, Seattle, WA, as well as select individual schools.

Common Cents Mission:
Common Cents, creator of the Penny Harvest, nurtures a new generation of caring and capable young people between the ages of four and 14 by enabling them to strengthen their communities through philanthropy and service-learning. (back to top)

What Is Service-Learning?
Service-learning is an educational method that entwines the threads of experiential learning and community service. It meets educational objectives through real-world experiences, while tapping youths as resources to benefit their schools and communities. Guided by teachers and community leaders, young people address real community needs by planning and executing service projects that are carefully tied to curricula. This hands-on learning enhances comprehension, academic achievement, citizenship, and character development, often reaching students who havenít responded to traditional educational models. Service-learning is education in action: developing critical-thinking and problem solving skills; taking on issues such as hunger, homelessness, and diversity; and valuing people of all ages as citizens with talents to offer.
(back to top)

(National Youth Leadership Council)


Chris W (79)
Wednesday July 24, 2013, 9:12 pm
Noted! Thanks!

Steve S (70)
Wednesday July 24, 2013, 10:15 pm

Russ S (52)
Wednesday July 24, 2013, 10:59 pm

Razzbarry F (26)
Thursday July 25, 2013, 2:49 am
great program thanks!

Sheila D (194)
Thursday July 25, 2013, 2:14 pm
Many changes take one or more generations to work, almost always starting with our children and grandchildren. Can we call it the trickle up effect?? I think the wolf program is a start. Also would hope that there are no more wolf releases until this hunting issue is resolved. Noted with thanks.

Jaime Alves (52)
Thursday July 25, 2013, 2:43 pm
Noted, thanks.!

S S (0)
Thursday July 25, 2013, 3:03 pm
Thank you.

Deborah W (6)
Thursday July 25, 2013, 9:45 pm
Round and round, nothing changes ... capture, study, breed, release, hunt/cull and start again. Until the mass populous mindset changes its level-of-worth scale I fear things will remain the same or worsen, as have many other well-meaning attempts.

Anette S (22)
Tuesday February 11, 2014, 2:35 pm
noted and some petitions signed
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