LouisvilleKY’s Mercy Academy receives national technology award

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NEWARK, Del.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Empowered to lead. Inspired to Serve. Today, the Lead2Feed Student Leadership Program awarded five middle and high schools from across the country with $5,000 technology grants as recipients of the Lead2Feed Challenge Early Entry Drawing. The winning teachers and students are participants in Lead2Feed, the nation’s leading and fastest growing free student leadership program. Aligned to standards and 21st century skills, Lead2Feed engages students to develop leadership, literacy and teamwork skills by completing service learning projects addressing needs in their community. The program is inspired by Co-Founder, former CEO and Chairman of Yum! Brands, and leadership expert, David Novak. The program was developed by the Foundation for Impact on Literacy and Learning, the Lift a Life Foundation and the Yum! Brands Foundation.

Winners from the Lead2Feed Challenge Early Entry Drawing were randomly selected from registered teams who completed and entered their Lead2Feed Challenge projects by December 9, 2016. These student-led projects, in partnership with a local non-profit 501c3, ranged from meeting needs for the hungry, the homeless and rescued animals to using the arts to connect with seniors in the community. The awarded technology grants include tablets and computers which will support educators and students in their efforts to create meaningful change in their communities.


The winning schools include:

  • DAR High School FCCLA – Grant, AL: Students focused on projects promoting breast cancer awareness with the Breast Cancer Research Fund of Alabama, stocking shelves with the Salvation Army, meeting needs of the Downtown Rescue Mission, caring for pets at the Wonder Pets Shelter, raising funds for Covenant House and reducing the issue of strays with God’s Feral Felines. Teacher Shelley Cantrell shared this sentiment from a student, “The most powerful lesson about becoming a leader in a group is to be responsible and able to overcome any obstacles that may come your way.”
  • Mercy Academy – Louisville, KY: Student teams identified and fulfilled needs identified by community charities including the Americana Community Center, Salvation Army, Family Scholar House, Center for Women and Families, Franciscan Kitchen and the Food Literacy Project. Educators Rick Blackwell and Kari Simms shared this student insight, “Lesson 6, The Change is Never Over, is most the powerful and important because when we learned how to most efficiently use our skills and communicate with our partners, we really began to see positive changes occurring within our community.”
  • Belmont After School Enrichment Collaborative – Belmont, MA: The sixth grade after school arts program paired with the Beech Street Center and Council on Aging to create photo journals about significant moments in seniors’ lives, including times of social justice. Teacher Danielle Green said, “The Lesson 1 Lifeline exercise was powerful. We don’t always take the time in our culture to reflect on where we come from, the good and bad things that have formed us and what we uniquely have to offer.”
  • Spring Lake Park High School FCCLA – Spring Lake Park, MN: Students used Lead2Feed lessons to prepare a one-week intensive food collection with the Community Emergency Assistance Program. Students said, “Teamwork is important for trusting in each other to organize and follow through on projects.”
  • Bridger High School FCCLA – Bridger, MT: Seventh through twelfth grade students participated in Bringing Unity to Our Community Day by working with nine area charities. Teacher Vicki Kaufman said, “The leadership training in Lead2Feed was invaluable. It breaks the process into easy to understand and apply steps. The team members are so empowered by the knowledge gained from this program. They will be our leaders in the future.”


Since its inception five years ago, more than one million middle and high school students from 5,000 schools and clubs across all 50 states have participated in Lead2Feed. The program offers a comprehensive curriculum aligned to 21st century skills, including lessons on project management and teamwork, among others. Teachers and advisors can register their student teams for the Lead2Feed Student Leadership Program and enter the Lead2Feed Challenge online at www.lead2feed.org for the opportunity to win over $275,000 in charitable grants and $170,000 in technology grants for schools and clubs. The final deadline to submit student-led projects is April 7, 2017.

“The Lead2Feed Challenge provides educators with a free turnkey service-learning experience that is integrated seamlessly into existing curriculum goals,” said Diane Barrett, Executive Director of the Foundation for Impact on Literacy and Learning, Inc. “The program empowers students to become leaders and make a difference in their communities and around the globe. These skills will serve them in the present and beyond, through college and into their careers.”

“The Lead2Feed Student Leadership Program propels the development of leadership capacity in communities across the country. We continue to be inspired by these future leaders and the change they are making for the greater good,” said Ashley Butler, Director of the Lift a Life Foundation.

To watch the action, get involved and learn more, follow Lead2Feed:
• Web: http://www.lead2feed.org
• Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/Lead2Feed
• Twitter: https://twitter.com/LeadtoFeed
• Instagram: http://instagram.com/leadtofeed
• Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/leadtofeed/

Complete rules and details on the Lead2Feed Challenge are available at: http://www.lead2feed.org/how-to-participate/project-submission-rules/

About Lead2Feed

The Lead2Feed Student Leadership Program was created by the Foundation for Impact on Literacy and Learning and the Lift a Life Foundation, with assistance from the Yum! Brands Foundation, to encourage middle and high school students to hone leadership skills by completing a service project around a community need involving a public nonprofit 501c3.

About Foundation for Impact on Literacy and Learning

The Foundation for Impact on Literacy and Learning, a 501c3 organization, supports and builds alliances that enhance innovative, instructional programs and community outreach by providing the resources to promote new opportunities and participation. FILL is a supporting organization to the International Literacy Association. The foundation welcomes participation in efforts to engage, enlighten and inspire today’s students and educators by opening their classrooms to the real world. The Foundation seeks funding from other foundations, private companies and organizations to help provide educational programs for elementary and secondary schools, community colleges and/or programs in specific disciplines or curriculum areas. The Foundation works with interested parties to collaborate on the creation of an educational program that promotes literacy and learning.

About Lift a Life Foundation

The Lift a Life Foundation was established in 1999 by David and Wendy Novak. The mission of the Lift a Life Foundation is to lead the way with innovative programs that help people in need and develop future leaders. The Foundation focuses on creative partnerships that make a lasting impact in the primary areas of hunger relief, early childhood education, juvenile diabetes, military family support and leadership development. Since Lift a Life Foundation began, it has helped thousands of people in need through grants and programming support. David Novak is the Co-Founder, former CEO and Chairman of Yum! Brands, one of the world’s largest restaurant companies with nearly 43,000 KFC, Taco Bell and Pizza Hut restaurants in more than 130 countries and territories. A renowned expert on leadership and recognition culture, Novak is the author of three highly respected and critically acclaimed books, The Education of an Accidental CEO, the New York Times bestseller Taking People With You as well as his latest parable, O Great One! A Little Story About The Awesome Power of Recognition. David has been recognized as “2012 CEO of the Year” by Chief Executive magazine, one of the world’s “30 Best CEOs” by Barron’s, one of the “Top People in Business” by FORTUNE and one of the “100 Best-Performing CEOs in the World” by Harvard Business Review. In April 2015, he received the prestigious 2015 Horatio Alger Award for his commitment to philanthropy and higher education and became a lifetime member of the Horatio Alger Association of Distinguished Americans. He is the recipient of the 2012 UN World Food Program Leadership Award for Yum! Brands World Hunger Relief effort that raises awareness, volunteerism and funds to address this global problem. He received the national 2008 Woodrow Wilson Award for Corporate Citizenship. He also is the founder of the world’s first recognition brand, OGO, which stands for ‘O Great One’, a term coined by Novak to define influential people, such as family, friends or co-workers, who inspire and contribute to those around them. Wendy Novak is a lifelong philanthropist and volunteer. She serves on the advisory board for the Wendy L. Novak Diabetes Care Center.

About Yum! Brands, Inc.

Yum! Brands, Inc., based in Louisville, Kentucky, has nearly 43,000 restaurants in 135 countries and territories and is one of the Aon Hewitt Top Companies for Leaders in North America. The company’s restaurant brands – KFC, Pizza Hut and Taco Bell – are the global leaders of the chicken, pizza and Mexican-style food categories. Worldwide, the Yum! Brands system opens over six new restaurants per day on average, making it a leader in global retail development.