Eight year old Finian Stroup raises funds to support Penn State bee health research

Posted: March 4, 2014

Last summer, Finian Stroup was inspired to save the bees. She read the Time Magazine cover article describing the massive losses of honey bee colonies around the world, and knew that she could make a difference. And in just a few months, the eight year old raised over $1000 to help support research on honey bee health, while also raising awareness of the plight of bees in her community.

Photo right - Finian Stroup, from Mifflinburg, PA, presents donation and handmade queen bee pillow to Christina Grozinger, director for the Center for Pollinator Research at Penn State.  Finian's generous donation will support the research, education and training of graduate students in the Center.  Photo credit: Jon Stroup.

Finian, a student at Meadowbrook Christian School, and her parents, Jon and Miriam Stroup of Mifflinburg, PA, sought out local beekeepers to help Finian with her plans.  Finian received enthusiastic support and generous donations of wax and other materials from Bob Geary of Danville, PA, Linda and David Hackenberg of Lewisburg, PA and Yvonne Crimbring of the PA State Beekeepers Association.  Finian fashioned solid perfumes and delicate bars of soap, and sold these at community festivals in late summer and fall 2013.  In her booth, she also had brochures and posters explaining the biology and health of honey bees, to help her customers understand the importance of bees to our agriculture.  Three-quarters of our major crops, including fruits, vegetables and nuts, need honey bees and other pollinators to produce seeds and fruit.

"Honey bee populations are crashing throughout the world, with US beekeepers losing an average of 30% of their colonies every winter" says Christina Grozinger, director of Penn State's Center for Pollinator Research.  "Finian's generous contribution to the Center for Pollinator Research will support the education, training, and research of our graduate students as they study the causes behind these declines.  With the enthusiasm, dedication and support of people like Finian, we hope to develop new management approaches to better conserve bee populations for future generations".  As Finian says, "We should all be thankful for bees. They are amazing and very interesting creatures. How can anyone not love a tiny little worker bee?"

For more information, please visit the Center for Pollinator Research