Description & History
Common Cents runs the Penny Harvest Program in over 720 New York City schools. A fully matured Penny Harvest Program engages very large numbers of students within a given community in resource mobilization, youth philanthropy, civic engagement, and peer mentoring.
In New York City, the nation's largest school system, the program has already won wide acceptance, spreading to a substantial majority of schools within every district. The organization is now seeking broad support to institutionalize the Penny Harvest Program in cities throughout the country.
By integrating youth into their communities as effectively engaged participants, and doing so with programs that can potentially involve every child in the country, Common Cents is committed to building a just society that democratizes opportunity for all its children.
Common Cents was founded in 1991 to promote the Penny Harvest, an annual youth campaign to help homeless people by collecting masses of idle pennies in New York City schools.
Over the last decade this highly popular community service has evolved into the Penny Harvest Program -- a versatile, year-long progression of classroom and school-wide service-learning experiences. Now, the Penny Harvest is run in over 800 schools throughout the 5 boroughs. Students raise nearly $600,000 annually.