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Montessori ideas vie for Pepsi Refresh Project grant money

Pepsi is giving away $1.3 million each month to fund great ideas to "refresh the world" submitted by everyday people during 2010. The Pepsi Refresh Project began in February and has already funded 96 ideas that received the most number of online votes each month totaling more than $4.1 million. Two Montessori based project ideas are currently competing for June funding from Pepsi Refresh.

Children harvesting vegetables at the Brigit's Bounty gardens
Brigit's Bounty

How does it work?

Funding ideas are divided into five categories: Health, Arts and Culture, Food and Shelter, The Planet, Neighborhoods and Education and four dollar amounts: $5,000, $25,000, $50,000 and $250,000. Each month Pepsi will accept around 1000 refresh project ideas, have online voting open until the last day of the month and then award grant money to the ten highest vote getting ideas in each category.

For the month of June, two Pepsi Refresh Project ideas that feature Montessori ideals need support from Montessori community via online voting. Voting is open until June 30, 2010.

Children's House Montessori of Weld County has submitted a $50,000 grant request to purchase new equipment and materials and support tuition scholarships for the 2010-2011 school year. To receive funding, the idea must finish in the top ten in its' category. The Children's House Montessori Education, Excellence and Enhancement Grant is currently ranked 24th. Click here to vote.

Brigit's Bounty is a program that has established organic community gardens that invite hundreds of Montessori and public school children every month to plant, water, weed and tend the vegetables in a natural outdoor environment. Harvests are then donated to food banks, schools and the community. Brigit's Bounty is requesting a grant for $25,000 in order to increase their growing spaces and children's garden areas and to purchase a tractor and gardening materials. Brigit's Bounty's Pepsi Refresh Project idea is currently ranked 19th. Click here to vote.

How can you submit your own Montessori grant request?

The Pepsi Refresh Project is looking for "people, businesses, and non-profits with ideas that will have a positive impact. Look around your community and think about how you want to change it". Every teacher,school administrator and parent in the Montessori community can use this opportunity to join together and help each other succeed and promote Montessori education. How many Montessori teachers and students in the Chicago area have world changing project ideas that need outside funding in order to move forward? With school budgets being stretched to their limits, here is an amazing opportunity for a real world application of Montessori cooperation and community.

Click here to download a toolkit to learn how to submit an idea to the Pepsi Refresh Project.

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