Think Inside the Box: ACE reaches nearly 20,000 children through Teacher Supply Box Program

News | November 06, 2017

Jaleesa Jones
Social Media Coordinator

In April of this year, ACE announced its partnership with the Kids In Need Foundation, or KINF, a charity that works to equalize education by providing free school supplies to schools in low-income communities. The college also announced it would serve as a founding partner of the foundation’s Teacher Supply Box Program, which would provide supplies to more than 2,000 students in grades K-12 across the country.

This fall, ACE is excited to share that initial results from the partnership indicate the program exceeded those expectations, delivering 1,300 boxes and impacting 650 teachers and nearly 20,000 children from California to Massachusetts with slightly heavier concentration in southern states.

"It’s a great feeling to be part of the solution to support struggling schools," said ACE Senior VP of Enrollment Operations Monica Carson as deliveries continued to roll out. "I have had the opportunity to deliver school supplies directly to the teachers in their classroom. To see the level of excitement, enthusiasm, and joy in the kids’ eyes when they receive these supplies is priceless."

That relief–in the face of a swelling resource gap–is what inspired the pioneer program.

"There are 16 million children that live in poverty throughout the United States and last year, we were able to get supplies into the hands of 5.4 million of them, but clearly the need remains," said Pete Tack, the development director at the Kids In Need Foundation and manager of the Teacher Supply Box Program. "That is why the Teacher Supply Box Program was created, with the generous support of ACE. It is a way for us to expand our reach and impact to children outside of the areas that are serviced by our Teacher Resource Center locations across the county."

Monica Carson says ACE saw that same potential. "In our relationship with KINF, we’ll be able to continue to be a part of a national campaign to help support educators throughout the country," she said. "Not only have we partnered with an organization that spans the U.S., but we are now focused on continuing to give back at the local level through other non-profits that are working together with KINF to continue to have an impact in the classroom."

The collaboration between KINF and other regional non-profits is what led ACE to the foundation in the first place. "We initially learned about the Kids In Need Foundation through our relationship with Teachers’ Treasures," Carson said, noting the foundation is their primary supplier. "When KINF introduced the Teacher Supply Box Program as their new grant campaign for 2017, they were looking for sponsorships to support the distribution of the supplies and the boxes, and it seemed like a great opportunity for ACE to get involved."

"ACE was part of a group of four donor organizations that was critical in funding the program in this inaugural year," Tack maintained, adding, "Monica was terrific to work with, and that sealed the beginning of what we hope will be a long-term partnership."

For anyone interested in donating to or otherwise supporting the Teacher Supply Box Program, Tack shared this advice: "Individuals can support (us) by following us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram @Kidsinneed. Or, visit our website, and make a donation to the organization. Feel free to make a donation to the general organization or designate it specifically to the Teacher Supply Box Program, (and) let your friends, family, and coworkers know about the partnership and the work that is being done for teachers and students."

Looking for ways to get involved with your local community? Check back next week for a window into what ACE is doing and the community service efforts that keep us motivated.