A Story of Inspiration

Written by Plant With Purpose on February 24, 2010 in General

by Corbyn Small

Late last fall, a teacher of a 5th grade class in Naperville, Illinois got in touch with Plant With Purpose asking how his class could be involved in supporting our work. Mr. Farrelly said that they would be studying Africa in their geography class and that Plant With Purpose’s programs in either Tanzania or Burundi would make a great fit and teaching tool. I sent a couple of brochures and had a few short conversations with Mr. Farrelly and that was it. The rest was up to our newest advocate, a 5th grade teacher,

and his ability to inspire creativity and action in the minds of his students.

A few short months later Plant With Purpose received a check for a whopping $650.00 and a note signed by the whole class expressing ‘great joy in being able to give to Africa.’ The students discussed where in Plant With Purpose’s programs they would like to see the funds designated, and they decided that reforestation and agroforestry in Burundi, our newest program, would be the best place. Our whole office was taken aback at these 11-12-year-olds who had not only raised a lot of money on their own, but also decided where in Plant With Purpose’s complex programs they would like to fund!
These students managed to raise enough money to plant 650 trees in Burundi! But that’s not all by a long shot: they gained invaluable education about a world that has so much need and yet so much to offer. Mr. Farrelly taught his students how deforestation in Africa not only affects the environment, but every individual farmer who lives day to day growing crops to feed their families. He helped them to see that looking at root causes rather than symptoms is the best way to take a strong stand against poverty as we know it.
To the students in Mr. Farrelly’s 5th Grade Geography class, on behalf of Plant With Purpose staff both here in the United States and internationally in Burundi, THANK YOU! Your creativity and sacrifice help to remind us that no matter who you are or where you come from, you can make a positive difference in this world. This testimony goes to show that today’s youth are ready to engage in real life issues; after all, it’s their future they are looking after.
If you are inspired to be a part of the transformative development work taking place through Plant With Purpose in six countries around the world, please visit To sponsor a village for only $30 a month Click Here

Plant With Purpose staff (with Brian McLaren) and Plant With Purpose Burundi Staff.


Corbyn Small serves as Plant With Purpose’s Outreach Coordinator. He cultivates relationships with donors, churches, artists and musicians to generate interest and enthusiasm for Plant With Purpose’s life-changing programs.

Leave a Reply