Gratitude Committee: A Lesson in Giving Thanks

Making thank you cards for the lemonade stand.

In July and August of 2021 GiGi’s Playhouse Hillsborough was lucky to have two student interns from Columbia University. Emily and Samantha are both working towards their master’s degree in occupational therapy, and they were determined to work with as many age groups as possible.

One task suggested was to help implement a Gratitude Committee, which would focus on giving back to the community for the things we are generously given, and showing appreciation for the community in which we live. Together the four adults on the committee decided that they would work to create an end-of-summer lemonade stand the afternoon of Friday, August 27 in front of Mailbox Business Center.

(l to r) Alexa, Emily, Chris, Katherine, and Sam at the lemonade stand.

“This committee from start to finish put their hearts into every decision, and decoration, and they were determined to give back to the community that continues to support GiGi’s. It was amazing to watch this group bring their plan to life. We couldn’t be prouder of their accomplishments this summer as part of the Gratitude Committee,” said Sam.

Working as a team, Alexa, Chris, Mary, and Natalie created a list of the items needed for a successful event. They created a budget, planned the menu (and item prices), practiced their money math, and hand-made thank you cards for everyone who stopped by for lemonade and cookies. The day before the event, they gathered at the Playhouse to bake and package cookies and make five gallons of lemonade. All of their hard work paid off! In just three hours, they made $500!

Natalie working at the lemonade stand.

“From budgeting, to working on sales skills, to baking and making the lemonade, the Gratitude Committee worked so hard to plan this fundraiser from start to finish! After a year spent on Zoom, it was a great opportunity to be outside together and give back to GiGi’s Playhouse,” said Emily.

The GiGi’s Playhouse Hillsborough Gratitude Committee will continue to express its unending gratitude to the surrounding community. Program participants ages 18 and up are invited to be a part of the committee. For information on how to join, email

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