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School PTA introduces campaign to raise $40K in needed funding

August 31, 2018
By TIFFANY REPECKI (trepecki@breezenewspapers.com) , Island Reporter, Captiva Current, Sanibel-Captiva Islander

With the new school year already in swing, The Sanibel School PTA has initiated a donation drive to try and make up for necessary fundraising dollars that were lost last year due to Hurricane Irma.

In August, the PTA announced the "Donation Invitation Plan of Action," with the goal of raising $40,000 by Oct. 1. The campaign is asking for $200 from 200 school families, friends, relatives, island businesses or individuals who want to help provide funds to the school, its teachers and students.

"Anyone associated with the island or the island community," PTA President Alicia Clark said. "Anybody that would be willing to participate and help us raise these immediate funds."

Article Photos

TIFFANY REPECKI
From left, Sanibel School PTA Vice President Janka Varmuza, Secretary Vanessa Flynt, President Alicia Clark and Member Director Penny Breece; Treasurer Becky Mulka is not pictured.

As of Aug. 29, approximately $4,500 had been collected through the drive.

"We have about $36,000 left to go," she said.

Clark explained that Irma and the storm's aftermath limited the PTA's fundraising ability for the first half of the 2017-2018 school year. It only raised about half of what was needed for this new year.

"We were unable to raise the funds we need to support the school," she said.

As far as Clark knew, it was the first time that the PTA has fallen short of its goal.

"We've been able to sustain what the school needed or requested from us without issue," she said.

Clark explained that the PTA-raised funds supplement the district's funding for the school.

"The Lee County School District provides money for each individual student," she said. "However, because we're a smaller school, we do not get the same amount of funds as the larger schools."

"Those are the two reasons why we need the money," Clark added of the campaign.

Over the years, funds raised by the PTA have helped to support worthwhile projects, activities and events for the school, like workbooks, the theater and music programs, and some scholarships.

"We assist with the STEM programs," she said. "We assist with the yearbook program."

The funds cover teacher projects, setting up classrooms and providing supplies.

"Whatever the teachers and the school needs," Clark said. "What they need to start their year."

From a donor's standpoint, the drive will reduce the number of fundraising tasks for the 2018-2019 school year, which can be time consuming and cause "giving fatigue." She explained that research has shown that multiple small fundraisers can lessen a group's ability to raise funds versus one big push.

"When people are able to just give directly, more funds are raised and there's less stress," Clark said.

"That's what we're aiming for," she added.

However, it does not mean the PTA has canceled all of this year's fundraising events.

"We still, as a PTA, will put on events," Clark said, adding that only the smaller ones are eliminated. "We are still going to have larger fundraisers - we will still try to bring up the school's spirit."

For example, an Adult Night Out is planned at The Community House for November, which will feature wine and hors d'oeuvres, while the Annual Seahorse Festival is set for March 30-31.

Principal Chuck Vilardi commended the PTA's past and ongoing efforts.

"I am thankful for our wonderful PTA and their board for supporting the needs of my students and teachers," he said. "They have gone above and beyond in all that they are doing."

Vilardi explained with the PTA's help and support, the school has been able to build a culture of students who believe that they are leaders. He pointed out that the school vision is to "Unite, Inspire and Empower" and that the school mission is "What Starts Here, Will Soon Change The World."

"I am proud of all that the PTA has helped me accomplish over the last three years," he said.

"The PTA is living and breathing our school vision and mission," Vilardi added.

Clark encouraged the community to support the campaign if possible.

"We are there to make every student's educational experience the best possible and the most memorable," she said. "And to remain the best school that we can possibly be."

Contributions to the "Donation Invitation Plan of Action" can be mailed or delivered to The Sanibel School, 3840 Sanibel Captiva Road, Sanibel, FL 33957. Any contributions are tax deductible.

As of Sept. 29, the following had donated: Philip Kuntz and Vanessa Kelly; The Saunders; The Fases; The Mujahiras; The Mossbergs; The Dosses; The Stewarts; The Szymanczyks; The McSorleys; The Goesslings; The Vandenbrinks; The Nettes; The Flynts; The Kirklands; The Plassards; The Bakos; The Rileys; The Martinsons; and The Baileys.

 
 

 

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