A supplies drive organized by the local non-profit Teacher’s Fund has raised $56,000 to help Santa Barbara-area teachers purchase tools and materials for their classrooms.
The annual Back-to-School Drive was held online this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Community members and businesses were invited to donate to the fundraiser between September 16 and October 16. Donors could also sponsor an individual teacher’s request for supplies.
All proceeds raised from the event are sent directly to local K-12 teachers to help them buy materials that enhance their students’ learning. This year, many teachers asked for assistance purchasing educational computer software and tools to facilitate the unprecedented shift to online learning during the pandemic.
“This much-needed money will be put to good use supporting our Santa Barbara teachers and students,” said Renee Grubb, owner of Village Properties Realtors and founder of the Teacher’s Fund. “We are so impressed and grateful for the generosity of our community. Despite being restricted to fundraising virtually, we easily surpassed our initial goal of raising $50,000.”
Grubb singled out Village Properties Realtor Brianna Johnson as the main organizer of the event. Johnson had the idea for the very first Teachers Fund supplies drive, and has been key to the fundraiser’s success ever since. She and Grubb co-chair the organizing committee. Other committee members are Leanne Wood, Dianne Johnson, Amy Abbott, Sheela Hunt, Angel Speier, Candace Cavaletto, Dana Patterson, Ivonne Arroyo, and Rachael Bissig.
“Johnson’s creativity and dedication is what makes this event possible every year,” said Grubb. “Thanks to her leadership, a strong committee, and all of their efforts, we’ve made a real difference in the lives of hundreds of teachers and students.”
The Teacher’s Fund was created in 2002 by the owners of Village Properties as a way for teachers to request much needed supplies for their classrooms. Since then, the Teacher’s Fund has donated over $1.7 million to our local schools. 100 percent of the funds raised go directly to local teachers for their classrooms.
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