That is the message the Langley School District Foundation is trying to spread in it’s latest campaign to raise funds to support 650 local families with weekly groceries.
The foundation is selling T-shirts with the messages “be kind” and “choose kindness” to compensate for the drop in fundraising revenue due to the pandemic.
Susan Cairns, executive director of the foundation, says the organization was forced to cancel three major events: Grand Prix Gala at Thunderbird Show Park, Annual Golf Tournament at Redwoods Golf Course and Christmas in July at Fox & Hound Pub in Aldergrove.
“The three events usually raise more than $300,000 for the foundation in terms of cash, in-kind donations and publicity (and) awareness,” she said.
We have witnessed a “pandemic of kindness” during the COVID-19 crisis & we are so grateful. We want kindness to be contagious & now we can wear it for all to see! T-shirts available for $20. For more info and shirt purchases go to https://t.co/LzpIvM4iJ0 pic.twitter.com/Rf3ObUiOBY
— SD35 Foundation (@SD35Foundation) August 11, 2020
“The foundation has and is spending $32,500 per week since April 6 to ensure that all of our 650 struggling families are receiving gift cards in order to purchase groceries for their families,” she added. “The program has been ongoing throughout the summer and will continue as long as the coronavirus persists.”
With the sale of each $20 T-shirt the foundation hopes to promote ongoing kindness in the community while supporting local families.
“The initiative has struck a chord with hundreds of people,” said Cairns. “The response has been much more than what we could have imagined… It takes way less energy to be kind than to be angry and it’s much better for the mood and soul of a community. We are thrilled with the response and buy-in of our idea.”
When schools in Langley were in-session the foundation supported thousands of students in its district through its Food For Thought program, but when COVID-19 struck the organization was forced to find a new way to help.
“When in-class instruction was suspended, the foundation was very concerned about all the children who regularly receive, breakfasts, lunches, snacks and take-home backpacks filled with food,” Cairns explained. “After discussion with the schools and parents, the foundation determined that the most efficient and safest way to help families was to provide $50 gift cards every week.”
To support the Food For Thought program visit www.langleyschooldistrictfoundation.com/food-for-thought.html or to purchase a T-shirt visit www.langleyschooldistrictfoundation.com/events-.html.