Assistance League of the Chesapeake is the proud recipient of a Parole Rotary Foundation grant of $3,000. The grant was awarded on June 11, 2019. The Parole Rotary Foundation was established by the Rotary Club of Parole (Annapolis) to support programs that focus on the needs of the local community.
The award was presented by the Rotary’s grants chair, Prue Clendenning-Clopp (left), to our V.P. Philanthropic, Yolanda Perry (right). The grant award will fund our Operation School Bell program, which is the umbrella program for Kids In Need and Project Literacy.
Kids In Need provides school uniforms and Project Literacy provides books to Title 1 elementary school children in our county. Specifically, the grant will be used for uniforms for Tyler Heights Elementary School and for books for Georgetown East Elementary School students. These two Assistance League programs have a proven success record, and both have grown since inception to support the increasing need in our community.
In the 2018-19 school year, we provided over 3,000 uniforms to students in seven local Title 1 schools. Children in these schools are required to wear a school uniform. We provide khaki pants, a polo shirt, a sweatshirt, socks and underwear, as well as toiletries, hats and gloves to students chosen by the school’s counselor. In instances of difficult family situations, some students receive more than one uniform.
To quote Jessica Swearinger, Tyler Heights school counselor, “The positive outcomes of students wearing uniforms are that families don’t have to worry about the extra expense of buying clothes and students feel equal with no one feeling like they have less than another student.”
The grant money will support our Project Literacy program by providing a new book for 200 students attending Georgetown East Elementary School at the end of the 2019-20 school year. After working with the children all year to improve reading skills, we give a new book to each child to reinforce the skill and importance of reading. Two Assistance League volunteers work with the reading specialist and teachers to select and order the appropriate titles. A second book is purchased for each fifth grader in recognition of their graduation to middle school. The children show pride and excitement when receiving their new book. For many of the children, this is the first book they have ever owned.
“Parole Rotary has been a long-time supporter of Assistance League and our work in Anne Arundel County. We are very proud to be a recipient of this grant, which will go a long way toward our mission of transforming lives and strengthening community,” said Assistance League of the Chesapeake president, Maryann Gosnell.