A group of Primrose parents and teachers with little Olivia, at a fundraiser for her leukemia treatment

Happy Hearts: Ice Cream Social for Olivia

Throughout December, we are celebrating heart-warming stories of Primrose students, staff and alumni exhibiting exceptional kindness, thoughtfulness and generosity with our Primrose Happy Hearts blog series. This post comes to us from Peaches Rocheford, the Director of Marketing at Primrose School of Burlington in Massachusetts.

When Primrose School of Burlington opened last year, we knew we wanted to embody a sense of care, love and learning that reached far beyond our school walls. Every child and family in the Burlington community matters to us regardless of whether they are a part of the Primrose family. That’s why we partnered with an organization called Burlington Womenade, which connects us with local families in need so we can help them in any way we can.

primrosehappyheartscharacterdevelopmentoliviaicecreamsocial

A few months ago, Burlington Womenade introduced us to a 2-year-old girl named Olivia and her family. We were given the privilege of encouraging them on a journey they didn’t choose, and a journey no family wants to be on: supporting Olivia as she battles leukemia. We decided to host an ice cream social fundraiser at our school to help raise money for Olivia’s treatment.

More than 400 people attended the ice cream social. Children and parents signed a poster and notebook with well wishes for Olivia and her family. We raised more than $9,000, but the best parts of the day can’t be summarized in numbers and dollar signs.

As we planned the ice cream social, we weren’t sure if Olivia would be well enough to attend. On the day of the event, not only did Olivia attend, but she was also feeling well enough to play in one of our classrooms – just like any other 2-year-old in the school that day!

When we presented Olivia’s parents with the poster and notebook full of kind and thoughtful words at the end of the fundraiser, they were moved to tears, and we were, too. I think everyone who attended the event was reminded of how good it feels to help others. Giving without expectation is a virtue that we teach to children at Primrose, but it’s also a virtue that all of us, no matter our age, can always try to practice a little more often.

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