In August, Austin based non-profit A Legacy of Giving honored middle school teacher Shirley Hartmann with the Jane Nethercut Award for Excellence in Philanthropy Education. Hartmann launched A Legacy of Giving’s philanthropy education curriculum at Covington Middle School in 2009.
Hartmann teaches social studies and science. Her passion for service-learning led her to partner with A Legacy of Giving and launch the Covington Young Philanthropists. She said service projects at the school are now student-led. “Older kids teach younger students that they can change the world,” she explained. “I am lucky to be able to watch it happen.”
Last school year, Hartmann’s students collected 1,227 lbs. of food for the Capital Area Food Bank and 318 coats for Coats for Kids and raised $887 to build clean water systems in Burundi, Africa.
“Service is a learned behavior. Shirley Hartmann has taught over 1,000 students the joy of giving back, and now they are modeling service among their peers.” says Linda Brucker, Executive Director of A Legacy of Giving.
Studies show that youth service leads to increased giving and volunteerism as adults. According to Youth Service America, children who volunteer are twice as likely to volunteer as adults. They also give more often and more generously. A Legacy of Giving’s philanthropy education program teaches students about philanthropy, and then engages young people in addressing social concerns.