Paige Rock takes a cue from Women’s Giving Fund |

Paige Rock takes a cue from Women’s Giving Fund

Middle schooler says giving should start early

Nan Chalat Noaker
Park Record
Girls Giving Fund founding members were asked to announce this year's winner of the Women's Giving Fund high-impact grant at Deer Valley on July 10, 2017. Pictured (L to R): Avery Westover, Ashley Fannon, Madison Westover, Martina Cavieres, Ella Jenson, Sage Ruzek, Eva Ratchford and the group’s founder Paige Rock. Not pictured: Kyra Atkinson, Emma Cusimano, Gigi Kun.
Nan Chalat Noaker/Park Record

Two years ago, Paige Rock’s parents made a generous offer, but it just didn’t feel right to the 12-year-old Ecker Hill Middle Schooler. After attending the Park City Community Foundation’s inaugural Women’s Giving Fund grant celebration, Jennifer and Bill Rock offered to donate $1,000 in Paige’s name so that she, too, could be a member of the group.

Paige respectfully turned them down. Instead, she began to cook up a plan to start a Girls Giving Fund. Now, two years later, it is officially up and running.

“She would not let this idea fade away. She was persistent,” said her mom.

According to Paige, she was surprised that more girls weren’t involved in the Women’s Giving Fund but with an initial membership fee of $1,000, she could understand.

By contrast, membership in the Girls Giving Fund costs $100. The goal, says Paige, is to amass enough members to create a $10,000 fund that will be used to award grants to local nonprofits. There are 10 founding members already who are each recruiting 10 more.

Paige said she is hoping those new members are not intending to tap their parents for the cash. She wants them to earn the money themselves.

“They don’t have to get $100 off the bat. I’ve earned mine with babysitting. It is more special if they get it on their own. Then it’s their own money, not just their parents’ because that would be too easy,” she explained.

Paige credits the Park City Community Foundation for nurturing her idea. She approached them a few months ago with a detailed PowerPoint presentation and received an enthusiastic response. They have since offered mentoring and bookkeeping services to the young organization.

Lauren Vitulli, who leads the Women’s Giving Fund’s mentoring program, attended Paige’s initial presentation and recognized her commitment right from the start.

“This is truly her idea and she has been instrumental in creating the process and making the decisions. Her concept fit perfectly into what we are doing and what I personally love to do. The Community Foundation is thrilled to support her vision,” said Vitulli.

But Paige says her parents, Jennifer and Bill, are the ones who really inspire her to want to give back to the community. “I have watched them give back,” she said.

Paige said she isn’t shy about seeking out new members. She has a polished pitch that she says comes easily, “because it helps the community.”

The girls got a taste of the joy of giving earlier this month when they were invited to announce the name of this year’s Women’s Giving Fund high impact grant, a $30,000 check that went to Park City’s domestic violence prevention agency, Peace House.

“It felt great,” she said.

The Girls Giving Fund is hoping to cut a check of its own on Nov. 10 when Park City holds its annual Live PC Give PC day of giving. If all goes according to plan, the Girls Giving Fund founding members hope to award $5,000 to a deserving nonprofit of their choosing. And, Paige says the group’s involvement with the recipient will continue beyond the donation. The girls will volunteer for the organization throughout the year.

In the meantime, Paige and her cohorts are knocking on doors looking for new members. As their ranks grow, Parkites can also expect to see them, in their signature pink trucker hats, hosting bake sales and lemonade stands as they fatten up the Girls Giving Fund’s piggy bank.

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