Lynda and Stewart Resnick

published on May 14, 2021 - 11:40 AM
Written by The Business Journal Staff

Lynda and Stewart Resnick of The Wonderful Company have unveiled a new $1 million initiative that will pay Fresno State graduates to complete service with nonprofit organizations in their communities.

Called the “Wonderful Butterfly Project,” the fund provides up to $500 for each of the first 2,000 graduates from the Fresno State classes of 2020 and 2021 who complete two days of service. The fund is expected to generate 32,000 hours of volunteer work for Central Valley organizations.

Graduates can visit to match with local nonprofits and apply for funding once they’ve completed their community service hours.

The name of the fund is inspired by the butterfly effect, a phenomenon that was first discovered as part of chaos theory by Edward Lorenz, a mathematician who revealed through a computer model that the tiny flap of a butterfly’s wings in Brazil might start a ripple effect that ultimately caused a tornado in Texas, according to a Fresno State news release.

The announcement comes as Lyna Resnick prepares to deliver a commencement address to the 2020 and 2021 graduating classes at Fresno State this weekend.

“Never underestimate the powerful impact you can have in your own backyard. When you serve in the same place that you live, you build momentum, movements, and relationships that make an indelible mark on your community,” Lynda Resnick states in her commencement address. “We hope that this million-dollar gift to your classes will inspire you. Flap your wings, kick up dust, and bring a tornado of change down on anyone who tells you that it’s impossible to fix the world. You are the ones who will take to the air and inspire us all to fly higher once again!”

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