As the student organization responsible for maintaining a bee-friendly garden and educational hive at Mount St. Mary, the HoneyBelles regularly hold fundraisers for causes that support bees and beekeepers. The group of students recently became very concerned about the plight of bees and beekeepers in Australia due to the historic drought conditions and resulting widespread bushfires. They reached out to the New South Wales Apiarist Association to find out how they could help and were directed to the Hive Fund, a drought and bushfire relief campaign managed by Rural Aid aimed specifically at struggling beekeepers in Australia.
The HoneyBelles partnered with others in the local community, such as Walnut Valley Honey Company, to learn how to make lip balm using beeswax. The students then spent time making and selling lip balm over the course of several weeks in order to raise funds for the professional beekeepers seriously impacted by the drought and bushfires in Australia. They were ultimately able to raise $500 for Hive Aid.
Due to the project aligning so nicely with the Sisters’ of Mercy Critical Concern for the earth, news of the HoneyBelles’ efforts spread throughout the Mercy community worldwide – as far away as Australia.
“As a Sister of Mercy in Melbourne, Australia, I was very moved to read in Mercy eNews of your contribution to save our bees here in our country after the drought and bushfires,” Sr. Carole McDonald RSM wrote to the group. “How clever and industrious you were to learn, make and sell lip balm in order to make your contribution to save the hives. Thank you on behalf of many people who are grateful for your support and generosity.”
Mount St. Mary Academy, sponsored by the Sisters of Mercy, develops young women with a moral and intellectual foundation rooted in Catholic tradition. Mercy-minded and college-prepared, our students meet the future with wisdom, compassion and integrity.