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The Franklin News-Post
P. O. Box 250
310 Main Street, SW
Rocky Mount, Virginia 24151
540-483-5113
Fax: 540-483-8013

Henry Fork Service Center
30 years of saving product labels purchases new van
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Staff Photo by Stacey Hairston: The Henry Fork Service Center in Rocky Mount recently claimed a brand new van by saving Campbellā€™s soup labels. Pictured from left to right is Sarah Mullins, assistant director for administrations at the center; Jessica Hunt, teacher; Lisa Nichols, director of the center and Crystal Dudley, teacher. They are accompanied by just two of the 70 children currently enrolled at the center.

Friday, January 4, 2013

By STACEY HAIRSTON - Staff Writer

The Henry Fork Service Center has a brand new seven-seater mini-van, thanks to more than 1.6 million Campbell's soup labels.

The center, along with a church group, has been collecting the labels for over 30 years and turning them in to the Campbell's Soup Labels for Education Program for points. After building up enough points, they were able to claim their van, a white 2013 Dodge Grand Caravan, last week.

"The women of the Virginia United Methodist Conference from the Danville District have been phenomenal in collecting the labels for us," said Lisa Nichols, service center director.

"The labels are just one way the members could support us without spending a lot of money. Everyone eats soup and other Campbell's products, so something as simple as clipping labels has helped us out tremendously."

Mary Moorefield, one of the center's board members, volunteered to cut all the bar codes off the labels, glue them onto sheets (25 bar codes to a sheet) and turn the sheets in to Campbell's.

"The ladies also give us a lot of Box Tops for Education," said Nichols. "Since we are not a school and can not participate in that program, we pass them on to Sontag Elementary School."

The Campbell's Soup Labels for Education Program allows participating schools to earn points that can be redeemed for arts, athletics and academic merchandise. By collecting UPCs and beverage or sauce caps from over 2,500 participating products, schools can redeem their points by "shopping" in the online Campbell's Soup Labels for Education Program catalog.

The center already has plans to use the van to take the children on field trips through a Boy Scout Venture Crew program.

"We plan on going hiking this month and skiing in February," said Nichols.

They also plan to use the van for interpretation.

"We travel to different churches and other organizations and tell the story of the Henry Fork Center," said Nichols.

"In turn, these organizations often donate tons of items to the center, such as paper products, cleaning supplies and items for our thrift store. The van will come in handy when it comes to transporting these items."

The Henry Fork Service Center currently has five students ages 2 to 4 enrolled in the morning, and 65 additional students ages 4 to 14 enrolled in their after-school program.

The center also has around 500,000 additional points saved up in their "bank" and have already begun to set their goals for more instructional equipment for the children.

"No more vans," said Nichols. "Thirty years is just a very long time to wait and save. The children here love to read, so we would like to save our Campbell's points to hopefully get a few iPads or e-readers for the center." They have also "purchased" playground equipment in the past, according to Nichols.

To learn more about the Campbell's Soup Labels for Education Program or to find out how your school can participate, visit www.labelsforeducation.com.

"We really appreciate Campbell's working with us to achieve our goals," said Nichols. "They also gave us opportunities to earn bonus points, so we are very grateful for that. We appreciate the new van and look forward to doing great things with it."

 
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