This year the SOAR (Students Overcome with Adequate Resources) Project will go to helping the Hillsborough Education Foundation (HEF). Their mission is to strengthen public education in Hillsborough County through advocacy, investment of resources, and programs that empower every student to achieve both academic and personal success. The HEF provides support to underserved students that attend Title I schools.
The HEF serves 225,000 students, 67% of the district population are Title I students. 67% of students rely on free and reduced lunch and many cannot afford basic school supplies. Teachers often spend an average $500 per year from their own paychecks so that their students can succeed. The majority of HEF’s support goes towards providing students and classrooms in need with the necessary tools for learning.
The HEF takes pride in knowing they served 174 schools, distributed $3M worth of school supplies, logged 5,245 store volunteer hours, distributed 60K notebooks and introduced Online Ordering.
The HEF provides many great services but the two that stand out most are 1.) Teaching Tools Resource Center provides free school supplies to teachers from Title I schools and 2.) Scholarship programs awarded $400K to 197 deserving students and $36,675 was dedicated to teacher support through scholarships and board certifications.
How AAIM Members Can Help
The idea behind the project is to pay forward to an underserved school in the host city of our national meeting by collecting and donating needed supplies.
We are in the business of education; what better way to pay forward than to help such a program that helps a deserving school meet the needs of children? We may very well be providing a student with support to fulfill their dream of becoming a doctor!
Just be sure to add that you are with AAIM in the memo line and leave it in the box provided for monetary donations at the SOAR booth in the Exhibit Hall. As a group of caring individuals, we are positive that we can make a difference in the lives of young students. Let’s pull together and see how far they SOAR!!!!