Scenes from last night: Sophia Bush hosts 5th annual Pencils of Promise White Party
By Neesha Arter
Pencils Of Promise, a non-profit organization, began with the simple question posed by its founder Adam Braun, “What do you want most in the world?” A boy on the streets of India replied, “a pencil.” Founded in 2008 Pencils of Promise has provided over five million hours of education, empowered over 100,000 students, and built more than 100 schools all over the world.
Actress and philanthropist Sophia Bush was the host of last night’s 5th Annual PoP White Party. She is an advocate of education in developing countries and a supporter of Pencils of Promise. Guests enjoyed music by The Jane Doze and DJ Sean Glass while nibbling on passed hors d’oeuvres. Bush talked to SCENE about her involvement with Pencils of Promise and her views on social issues.
How did you first get involved with Pencils of Promise?
I’ve worked with a lot of great organizations over the years but I’ve never felt like an organization was truly my home until Pencils of Promise. I was at a conference and found PoP and I knew I wanted to give my heart and soul to PoP right at that moment.
What is your most memorable experience with PoP?
For my 30th birthday we raised $30,000 to build schools. I reached out to fellow social activists in my community and we were able to build two schools in Guatemala.
There are so many fabulous non-profit organizations out there, why is Pencils of Promise such a great one?
For me it’s about the spirit and the core values of the staff and the organization. At PoP we are giving a life and a future to children.
I know that PoP began with the question of “What do you want most in the world?” That philosophy has evolved from just pencils to schools. How does building schools impact developing countries…the world even?
If you look at the rates of women staying in school longer, having less children, getting married later, getting better education and being better mothers, that to me is making a difference.
Social media is extremely prevalent these days and I know you have a large following on Twitter. How has it helped get your message on social issues across?
We now have an avenue to have conversations that matter to us. The fact that I have an audience of close to one million people who care about the same social issues is what is meaningful to me. I saved a picture of a girl’s test scores and it shows that we have made a difference on a global scale and we have an opportunity to have a global conversation.
Published in SCENE magazine