From ensuring that students have warm clothing to meeting emergency medical needs, the Idaho Education Association’s Children’s Fund is in its 15th year of helping our state’s neediest students.
The IEA Children’s Fund started in 1996 and has since made nearly 3,800 grants totaling almost $875,000 to IEA member educators who – since they spend so much time with children – are often among the first to notice when a student faces an extraordinary need for help.
To protect students’ privacy, the IEA releases neither the names of the students who are helped nor the members making the requests to assist them. But IEA members have used the Fund to arrange for emergency dental work, eyeglasses, prescription medications, shoes, and winter coats.
IEA members – who include about 13,000 of Idaho’s teachers, classroom aides, librarians, janitors, bus drivers, cafeteria workers, and other school personnel – raise money for the Fund via a voluntary payroll deduction. Many special events are held, too.
The Fund began at the IEA’s statewide convention in 1996, where members raised more than a thousand dollars to launch it. It continues to grow, even in recessionary times: At the 2010 Delegate Assembly (IEA’s annual convention), IEA members raised more than $29,000 through a silent auction and personal and memorial donations.
Members of the public are welcome to contribute, too, by sending a check payable to the IEA Children’s Fund to the Idaho Education Association, P.O. Box 2638, Boise, ID 83701. The IEA Children’s Fund is a 501(c)(3) organization, so contributions are tax deductible.