April 22, 2024

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San Jose teen sells home-baked goods to buy laptops for nonprofit

A San Jose nonprofit is benefiting from the baking skills of a Presentation High School senior, who is donating proceeds from her macaron sales to buy laptops for clients of Sunday Friends.

Shrobana Sengupta hit on the idea when classes went online during the pandemic. The Cambrian area resident has volunteered with Sunday Friends and saw that some students from the low-income families served by the nonprofit didn’t have access to computers.

“About 80% of those families had lost their jobs and had no unemployment benefits,” says the teen. “Some of the children were attempting to do schoolwork on their smart phones.”

Shrobana had baked macarons as a Mother’s Day gift, and they turned out to be a hit not just with her mom but her friends as well, and her fundraiser was born.

Initially, she sold the cookies from her home, and friends and neighbors would pick them up. Later, she began publicizing her macaron sales via her website and on Instagram. She has so far raised enough money to provide more than 70 laptops to Sunday Friends.

Shrobana says there are many challenges in preparing these dainties. She began baking them in late fall, then winter came along. The change in weather affected the end result, so she experimented with the temperature.

“Macarons are finicky cookies,” she says. “They would not always turn out right.”

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