As a principal there are several jobs that have to be done that are not found in any job description.
Sacred Heart Principal Dr. Gary Manning can certainly attest to that after what he was asked to do for his students on Thursday afternoon.
His assignment: to kiss a goat.
“I don’t know if I won or lost, I raised the most money, but somehow I think I lost,” Manning said shortly before kissing Lil Dude, a bill goat that made an appearance at the school as part of a fundraising effort at Sacred Heart.
The students competed in a service project to raise money for project Heifer International during the Christmas season.
The organization is committed to end hunger and poverty throughout the world by providing livestock and training on the care of those animals to communities in Third World Nations.
Manning and Holy Wilson, assistant principal at Sacred Heart collected money from the students, faculty and staff each morning before school.
The administrator who collected the most money had the privilege of kissing Lil Dude.
“Dr. Wilson won by a landslide,” a very pleased Holy Wilson said as she announced the total raised. “As a school we raised $872.75.
“With that money we were able to help not one but 13 families,” Wilson added at an assembly with the elementary students. “It’s a pay it forward project so these 13 families will help other families so it will keep benefiting others.”
With the money collected the school was able to send four sheep, two goats, six flocks of chickens, and a flock of ducks.
Wilson explained that the animals would be able to provide wool, milk, eggs for consumption and eggs to sell for the families for added income.
Although Manning was thrilled with the dollar amount raised by the students, he had some trepidation about kissing Lil Dude.
According to Lil Dude’s owner, Annie Albright of Bright Hope Farm & Apiary, the goat was experiencing some first kiss jitters from someone he did not know as well.
“Lil Dude was born on January 1, seven years ago,” Albright said. “His mom died when he was born and so he has always lived in the house and really has been spoiled.
“He is shaking a lot this afternoon but that could be from the cold ride here or being around all of the people he doesn’t know,” Albright added.
Manning for one was hoping to become friends with Lil Dude.
“I brought my breath mints so hopefully I won’t offend anyone,” Manning said with a laugh. “I have to supervise basketball game tonight so we’ll see.”
Hope Lecchi can be reached at 660-826-1000 ext. 1484