Kindness comes in many forms.
Tara Janas uses baked treats to help spread it.
The Notre Dame Academy junior made a $650 donation to Howe Elementary School on Jan. 2 to help pay off school lunch debts for families in need.
Janas raised the funds over the past year by baking and selling healthy treats through her business startup, Healthy Treats for Good Eats.
“I love baking,” Janas said. “I love doing it. I just realized that maybe I can do something I love to help other people.”
For her efforts, Janas is the Triton of the Week for the week of Jan. 6, 2020.
The young entrepreneur’s idea came after she started volunteering with the Greater Green Bay YMCA’s Backpack Program, which provides food for students in need to take home for the weekend.
“I was really shocked that people in my community were suffering like this,” said Janas, who helps fill backpacks. “I never had to have that problem, but I wanted to give back to people that do.
“After doing that, I realized I want to do something more to raise money to donate to these schools.”
Janas, who also volunteers at Feeding America in Appleton, began baking and selling treats in her neighborhood at the end of 2018. Her use of healthy ingredients stems from something she has had to be conscious of since she was a child.
“I have really bad acid reflux,” Janas said. “I get bad heartburn a lot. It used to be way worse when I was younger. I learned that eating healthier actually helps it. Chocolate and sugar really aggravate and makes me feel bad, but when you replace that with healthier ingredients, I’m able to enjoy it without feeling sick afterward. I just got into healthy eating in general after that.”
Janas is always looking for ways to get involved at NDA. She is a member of the golf team, FBLA, Spanish Club, National Honor Society and will play the part of Mrs. Phelps in “Matilda The Musical” later this month.
“I feel like she is very mature for her age,” Spanish Teacher Diane Mulroney said. “I think she is very open and accepting of other people. She is super responsible and really just a sweet person and always willing to help.”
Janas plans to continue her Healthy Treats for Good Eats effort this year. She would like to make an impact on global health after graduating from NDA.
“I just really like the sense of community that’s here,” Janas said. “It’s kind of a sense of community that I haven’t felt in any other place before. We’re helping each other, and we’re supporting each other. There is no like you versus me. It’s more we’re supporting each other and helping each other succeed.”