Non-profit launches Random Acts of Kindness Forever fund

Published: Jan. 19, 2021 at 6:16 PM CST
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Many students are still without essential items like coats and eyeglasses, according to the La Crosse Public Education Foundation.

Principal Amber Erickson at La Crosse’s Logan Middle School knows there are students who struggle with basic daily needs.

“Field trips, haircuts, transportation to important events,” said Erickson. “This individual boy was experiencing some different behaviors and expressing poor self-image. He was sharing with our counselors that he’d never had a haircut before—so what we wanted to do is do something special for him.”

With help from the La Crosse Public Education Foundation, Logan staff was able to make that possible.

“We actually booked him an appointment for this first haircut in a barber shop, and he just had the biggest smile on his face and it was the neatest thing to see.”

The foundation announced Tuesday morning a $400,000 fundraising goal to publicly kick off their Random Acts of Kindness, or RAK Forever Fund.

RAK will benefit all students who attend class in the La Crosse School District.

Last year, the foundation raised $300,000 during the campaign’s so-called “quiet phase.”

“That accounted for about 50 percent of sustainability,” said Dr. Tom Thompson, RAK Forever Fund Committee Co-Chair with the La Crosse Public Education Foundation. “If we can get to $400, two-thirds, and just keep moving towards full sustainability as we can during this time.”

Alicia Place, Community Services Coordinator with the school district, says she’s happy with how the fund can help fill kids’ needs in a timely manner.

“There isn’t a criteria or qualification and you don’t need to prove income,” said Place. “It is if a child has a need or a parent or caretaker come forward with a need, we can quickly meet that usually within the same day.

“The more we receive, the closer we are to 100 percent sustainability as a program, and then those other dollars we receive during the year we can use to fortify other programs,” Thompson added.

All agree that little kindness can go a long way on kids’ learning journeys.

On average, committee chairs say Random Acts of Kindness helps a student in need more than 2400 times a year.

The La Crosse Public Education Foundation welcomes all donations.

For more information and how to contribute, click here.

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