A Taste of Kindness

Lily Skopp

Sophomores Gabby Suarez and Kayla Webster divide the task of spreading peanut butter and jelly.
Sophomores Gabby Suarez and Kayla Webster divide the task of spreading peanut butter and jelly.

The holiday season is known to all as a time full of giving, as evidenced by the global exchange of presents and greeting cards between friends and family. However, the most meaningful gifts of all are unselfish acts of kindness to the less fortunate, emulated by MSD DECA’s “I am Enough” chapter project, where over seventy students gathered Dec. 11 to make peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for Lifenet4Families- truly capturing the spirit of the holiday season.

The “I am Enough” project spearheaded by juniors Emily Weingarten and Ryan Marks aims to raise positivity and self worth levels on the MSD campus. In conjunction with bringing in motivational speaker Scott Fried to MSD, and planning other social action events, the “I am Enough” team decided to sponsor this sandwich-making event to promote gratitude amongst Marjory Stoneman Douglas students.

“It’s really great that this is something that we could bring to Douglas,” Weingarten said. “Giving to the less fortunate is something that makes others feel good about themselves, and it is important to share kindness with those who have less than we have.”

Most of the sandwiches went to LifeNet4Families; an organization is located in the heart of Broward County. LifeNet4Families, which serves around 70,000 individuals and families a year, aims to provide food, social services, and facilities for the less fortunate individuals living in Broward County.

Although the success of this event was largely due to the hard work of MSD DECA and the “I am Enough” team, various clubs such as NHS and Key Club also participated in the Dec. 11 event. These members of NHS and Key Club received hours for donating peanut butter and jelly, as well as for their help in making sandwiches. DECA diamonds were also given as incentive to help.

“Even though I’m doing this for NHS, I think that helping others in our community is important,” junior Amber Luboff said. “I am glad I was able to participate in such a wonderful event.”

In addition to the service clubs at MSD, one of the largest contributors was DECA teacher Sharon Cutler’s husband Ken Cutler and his law firm. After seeing information about this event on posted on the various “I am Enough” social media sites, the Cutler and Rader firm decided to donate the bread for this endeavor.

“We are fortunate to have the support of my husband’s law firm, which generously provided us with the bread needed to make the sandwiches,” Cutler said.

The goal of the “I am Enough” team was to make 250 sandwiches this year in order to surpass last year’s 200 sandwiches- a number they passed by nearly four times. A record number of 965 sandwiches was created in the two or so hours the event lasted. Since more sandwiches were made than expected, some sandwiches were donated to the Broward Outreach Center in addition to LifeNet4Families.

“I am extremely proud of what we accomplished today,” Marks said. “Not only did we reach our goal, but also we went above and beyond in our service to the community.

Because of the great amount of positive feedback the event received, the “I am Enough” team has already decided to have another sandwich making event (likely during third quarter), and will use the leftover peanut butter and jelly jars for this.

Through this peanut butter and jelly sandwich making event, and other social action programs, the “I am Enough” team has successfully proven that spreading holiday cheer may be just as simple as spreading peanut butter on bread.

Various students work together to create sandwiches.
Various students work together to create sandwiches.
Junior Ruth Bang collects one of the many loads of sandwiches.