Are you looking for a way to give back to local students and schools?
The Birmingham Education Foundation (BEF), a group that raises private funds for Birmingham schools, is collecting donations as part of its annual fund campaign, with all proceeds going back to programs at Birmingham Public Schools.
"Last year, the BEF provided more than $145,000 in grants to fund innovative programs that make the schools in our district great places to learn," Superintendent Daniel Nerad wrote in a letter to parents at the end of October. "It is difficult to predict what will inspire a student, so the BEF funds are used to expand on the exceptional curriculum our schools already provide."
Since its inception 12 years ago, the BEF has awarded $1.1 million in grants to every school in the Birmingham district. Donations are tax deductible and if you're looking to donate as part of the fund campaign, must be made by Dec. 31.
What has the BEF done recently? During the past few years, the BEF has:
- Helped Harlan Elementary students study colony collapse disorder in bees, with students following the lifecycle of a bee colony throughout the school year.
- Helped sponsor Expedition 2012: NASA Day, including a live Skype chat with NASA astronaut Dorothy Metcalf-Lindenburger as well as NASA Day, featuring science projects from around the district.
- Launch Expedition 2013: Medicine That Matters, which brings specially-tailored science and health curriculum into classrooms at all grade levels.
According to Nerad, the biggest donors to the BEF's annual fund campaign last year were Birmingham teachers — 80 percent of Birmingham staff members donated last year.
Donations can be in any amount — from $5-$500. The first 100 donors who give more than $125, meanwhile, will receive a $25 gift card to Toast Birmingham.
You can give to the BEF in a variety of ways:
- By mail
- Purchasing a commemorative brick
- Registering your Kroger Plus Card
- Making an Amazon purchase through the BEF home page portal
To donate directly to the fund campaign, visit the BEF website.