Yes we CAN: Robin Hood Days celebrates record-breaking year

Thanks to a few creative can-collecting activities and some friendly class competition, Mount St. Mary Academy’s annual Robin Hood Days canned food drive recently collected more cans and cash equivalent than ever before in its 45-year history: 63,328! This year’s total beat last year’s record-breaking amount (53,090) by more than 10,000 cans. The student-led schoolwide drive benefits local organizations that provide holiday meals for Arkansas families in need.


“I seriously could not be more proud to be a part of Mount and the school’s efforts to serve others,” said Sarah Johnson ’20, MSM student body president and four-year student council member. “It has been an honor to be able to participate in Robin Hood Days with such an extraordinary group of girls, and I am beyond proud to know that our efforts will help feed others in the community.”


Over the four weeks leading up to Thanksgiving break, students collected cans from family, friends and neighbors in addition to holding fundraisers like “We CAN Wednesday,” “Beans for Jeans” and “Free Dress Friday” spirit days. As extra incentive, students were also promised early dismissal days for meeting their individual class goals as well as beating last year’s record. Each grade level ultimately surpassed its individual goal of 8,750 cans and cash equivalent four days before the drive concluded on Friday, November 22. This year’s winning class was the senior class, who more than doubled their individual goal by collecting an astounding 21,343 cans. The freshman class came in second with 14,280 cans.


“I am incredibly proud of our girls this year; they always outdo themselves in generosity, hard work and creativity,” Noël Gieringer, MSM English teacher and student council sponsor, said. “I see this whole canned food drive as an example of our Mercy Value of excellence, along with our concern for the poor.”


For nearly 50 years, Robin Hood Days has helped provide food and monetary donations to local organizations, including Arkansas Foodbank, Helping Hand of Greater Little Rock, Rice Depot, Union Rescue Mission, Jericho Way, Our House, OXFAM and Catholic Social Services, among others. It is estimated that more than 1 million canned goods have been collected by Mount St. Mary Academy since the event began in 1974.


“While we are all so fortunate here at Mount, we still need to give back to the community, which is something Mount has been teaching us since day one of freshman year,” Sarah said. “We get an opportunity to be the physical embodiment of Jesus and live out his mission to serve others. It is something really beautiful to watch and experience.”


View photos of Mount St. Mary students helping load donated canned goods into the vehicles of this year’s benefiting organizations at


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.