TAMPA, Fla – For more than 100,000 Hillsborough County students this year, it won’t be easy to have basic supplies like pencils or pencils on the first day of school.
That’s why the Hillsborough Education Foundation (HEF) is a critical resource for Bay Area public school teachers and financially vulnerable students.
Thanks in large part to its teaching aids resource center (think a free Staples store), HEF handed out $ 2.7 million in supplies last year to Title 1 schools.
That’s huge for teachers, who regularly spend hundreds of dollars of their own money each school year to fill the gap in supplies for needy students.
âWhen you allow a teacher in a Title 1 school to start the year knowing that all of their students have the resources to be successful, that’s one less thing they have to worry about,â says Michael McCollum , director of advancement of the HEF.
But because of the pandemic, this year will be more delicate for HEF.
The Tampa nonprofit normally relies on in-person donations and collections of supplies hosted by businesses and residents, all of which have been hampered by quarantines, social distancing, and more.
The Foundation is behind schedule, but still has to meet the needs of the same number of students in Title 1 schools. So it’s about reaching out to community businesses and residents for a helping hand.
Through online and live fundraising campaigns, both of which are back this year, HEF expects to bounce back significantly this year.
To help in various ways, click here.