We are adding a fourth classroom this year, and for that we need a new door, circa 1920’s to 1950’s. We are a historical building, so it needs to match the other doors. We can’t go to Home Depot and find what we need, so we call salvage companies and check at thrift stores. Although I’m searching for a door, I keep my eyes open for other needed items too, and I strike pay dirt. Someone has obviously cleaned out recently because I find over 200 paperback and hardback books for our library, including full sets of phonetic readers: cost $38. I move on to Habitat ReStores. Sure enough, at the one in Durham I find a historical, five paneled door, just what we’re looking for, for $30, as well as an 8 foot solid wood work table for my classroom on sale for $40. As I’m leaving, I spot two padded, stackable chairs for the table, $6 each.
Back at school, in preparation for our geography unit, I order two Montessori map puzzles and a set of landform trays from a discount Montessori website: total, $80. I feel like I’ve gotten good value from that one $100 donation: a new door, worktable and two chairs, 200+ books, 2 wooden puzzles and 10 landform trays.
At this point, you are thinking that we don’t do a very good job of teaching math at JRA. But what I’ve neglected to tell you is that during this summer and early fall, each donation is matched by an anonymous donor. So each donation does double duty. And because we often buy used and search out discount sites, your donation gives even more value. Buying from thrift stores is an inflation buster; a similar table retails for over $600 and the chairs are $34 each.
We prefer to find what we need in this way so that we can provide tuition assistance to more students. We are not an exclusive community of learners; we welcome families of all income levels and circumstances. Right now I am working to find funds to offset tuition costs for students who need our services very badly but can’t pay full tuition.
For that, we need your help and your donations. Please consider making a monthly or yearly, tax-deductible donation to JRA. You can give and know that your donation will go far to make a struggling student’s life richer and more successful. We value your gifts and we promise to make them go as far as possible.
Thank you for your help.