May is M.I.L.K. Money Month!
More than 200 students in Northshore School District will experience homelessness this year.
In a recent Seattle Times article titled Tukwila’s homeless students graduate at much higher rate than statewide average, published April 14, 2016- Northshore School District was called out as having the highest graduation rates for homeless students statewide. This is no surprise since the students in Northshore are receiving support from the Northshore Schools Foundation.
“We couldn’t provide the services we do, without the support of the Northshore Schools Foundation,” Chris Bigelow, Student Services Director and Homeless Liaison for the Northshore School District said.
In 2010, two Northshore moms were meeting for lunch and discussing parent and education issues, and made a pact right then and there… they were not just going to talk about it, they were going to do something. April Remfrey who has now moved out of the country joined forces with, Sara Hayashi, Arts of Kenmore & Northshore Schools Foundation Board member, and Davina Duerr Deputy Mayor of the City of Bothell and came up with – Milk Money. M.I.L.K. an acronym for Making an Impact on Learning for Kids, is a play on many concepts including collecting change to be a part of the change, using a milk bottle donated by Twin Brooks a family dairy to collect the change and much more.
“When we dreamt up the concept of Milk Money, we had no idea of the impact we would be making six years later and beyond. Honestly, we just wanted to stop complaining and do something to affect education in WA. Partnering with the Northshore Schools Foundation has given us the direction to help local NSD students in need without exploiting their situations. I continue to be amazed at our community support!” said Hayashi.
“The vision for the Milk Money project presented itself one afternoon 6 years ago and has since ridden a wave of unbelievable inspiration and support from the Northshore Schools Foundation and Northshore community. Now the issue of increasing homelessness has been catapulted onto the front page of every local newspaper, and the Milk Money project is there to support this vulnerable population of students,”said Duerr.
This May, the milk money campaign, in its sixth year, will place over 100 Milk bottles in local businesses to fund much needed supplies for the homeless students in our district. The program continues to grow thanks to the increasing number of participants and some businesses who have decided to keep the bottles all year long.
“We acknowledge the number of very important causes in our community ad originally wanted to make sure that store owners and guests had the opportunity to support all the causes that are close to their heart. What we have found is that for some businesses helping at risk students succeed in school is their primary charity cause,” Said Carmin Dalziel, executive director of the Foundation.
Bottles can be found year round at Banner Bank Bothell & Woodinville, Sparta’s Pizza, Alexa’s Café and Sound Credit Union.
Since 2010, the program has donated over $36,500 to students. The Windermere Foundation has provided more than a quarter of those funds as matching dollars.
“The Windermere Foundation has been dedicated to helping low-income & homeless families in our communities for over 25 years and is excited to be a part of the Northshore Schools Foundation’s Milk Money Campaign once again this year. During the month of May, local businesses collect spare change to assist in paying for school supplies, books, school pictures, yearbooks and other school related costs for these students through the school year,” said Marella Alejandrino, a local Windermere agent and Foundation Representative.
The Milk Money campaign is sponsored by the Windermere Foundation, Country Village, Twin Brooks Creamery, Banner Bank and HealthPoint.
Find out more about how you can get involved at www.NorthshoreSchoolsFoundaiton.org