“Crowdfunding” for teachers prevents dipping into own pockets

“Crowdfunding” for teachers prevents dipping into own pockets

PowerUP Jax fuels classroom innovation –

Many teachers – perhaps the vast majority – have been known to dip into their own wallets a time or two or more to purchase supplies for creative classroom projects.

Now a new initiative launched by the Jacksonville Public Education Fund will make it easier for teachers to raise funds to achieve their teaching goals.
PowerUP Jax is an online portal where community members can invest in innovative projects designed by teachers in Duval County.

Trey Csar, president, Jacksonville Public Education Fund; Susan Burns, third grade teacher, Susie Tolbert Elementary School; John Hirabayashi, CEO, Community First Credit Union and lead sponsor for PowerUP Jax, and Kenneth Reddick, member of the Board of Directors, Jacksonville Public Education Fund

Trey Csar, president, Jacksonville Public Education Fund; Susan Burns, third grade teacher, Susie Tolbert Elementary School; John Hirabayashi, CEO, Community First Credit Union and lead sponsor for PowerUP Jax, and Kenneth Reddick, member of the Board of Directors, Jacksonville Public Education Fund

“You don’t have to be Warren Buffett to invest in a brilliant idea,” said Trey Csar, president of the Jacksonville Public Education Fund. “Teachers in Duval County have creative project proposals to boost student achievement – and now everyone in our community has the power to make those dreams a reality.”

The site allows Duval County public school teachers to highlight projects on the site with a budget for supplies. Investors can search by school, subject or teacher name and donate an amount of their choice – from $5 to $500 – to fund the project, and share the project with others through social media and e-mail. When all funds have been raised, the teacher can order the project supplies, conduct the project and communicate directly with donors to share the impact on students. Learn more at www.powerupjax.org or call (904) 394-0949.

Community First Cares Foundation, operated by Community First Credit Union, is the lead sponsor for PowerUP Jax, and has granted the organization $25,000, the first $5,000 of which will match projects dollar for dollar. In addition to sponsoring the program, the Community First Cares Foundation will sponsor a new Innovation in Education Award to be presented at the annual EDDY Awards.

“Community First Cares Foundation is proud to support transformational projects like PowerUP Jax,” said John Hirabayashi, CEO of Community First Credit Union. “Our roots are in education and community service and this project is a great example of the importance of community engagement in the future of our children.”

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