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Southport Elementary Students Collect Peanut Butter for Local Food Pantries

SOUTHPORT, Fla. - It's never too early to start learning how to give back to those in need. That's the case at Southport Elementary School.

There's more than music in Ms. Hawley's classroom...there's lots and lots of peanut butter.

"We call it spread the peanut butter, spread the love!" said Hawley.

The kids are spreading the love to the homeless in Bay County. The 20 year tradition is pioneered by the peanut butter queen herself, Ms. Hawley.

"This is my title for the entire month of February, the 'peanut butter queen' because we build the peanut butter palace in the music room," said Hawley.

The peanut butter "palace" is a good visualization of the difference each jar can make. Southport is a Title 1 school meaning a large percentage of students live at or below the poverty line.

"Even though our students and families have limited resources they give so generously from their hearts," said Hawley.

This year they broke their record with more than 12 hundred jars. 

"I would say in the last 10 years we probably hit a thousand three or four times.. but never have we destroyed that goal as we did this year," said Hawley. 

The winning class gets Hawley's famous cookies.

"I do promise to bake my homemade cookies, chocolate chip and peanut butter and we have a milk and cookie party!" said Hawley. 

But more than anything they learn valuable lessons in kindness and generosity. The school will give the peanut butter to the Rescue Mission and First United Methodist Church next week. 
 


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