Each quarter, GreenStar selects three local not-for-profits to be the recipients of our Bring Your Own Bag, Use It for Good program donations. Our BYOB program encourages shoppers to bring their own bags by providing them with a token worth 5¢ that they can donate to one of the chosen organizations. At the end of the quarter, we make a donation to the groups based on the number of tokens given by our customers. This quarter, our recipients are the Ithaca Public Education Initiative, Habitat for Humanity, and Ability in Bloom.

The Ithaca Public Education Initiative, IPEI, is a two-decade old local non-profit dedicated to turning great ideas into unique and exciting educational opportunities for students in the Ithaca City School District (ICSD).

IPEI’s founders believed that teachers and school staff have great ideas in every classroom and in every school, and that the Ithaca community could support these teachers and turn these ideas into reality with their support. They invite individuals and local businesses to make gifts to IPEI, and make those gifts available to schools in the form of various grant programs.

Since 1996, with large and small donations from the Ithaca community, they have funded more than $1.5 million in programming and projects in every school in the ICSD.

This year they have funded more than 30 projects and programs, bringing artists, artisans, experts and educational supplies into our classrooms and schools. IPEI’s staff works with the ICSD administration to review projects they fund and consider ways these projects can be continued beyond one school year and beyond a single classroom — for the benefit of all students.

GreenStar is pleased to be a part of supporting IPEI and their mission here in Tompkins County!

Are you involved with a not-for-profit organization that might benefit from this program? Apply to be a recipient here.