The Santa Monica Education Foundation raised $205,503 during Pledge Days, which included a $50,000 matching gift from OneWest Bank and Santa Monica Place/Macerich. The fundraising effort ran from September 23-29 and the $50,000 match inspired 351 donors to contribute.
“Pledge Days and this match are a brilliant example of our entire community supporting education,” said Linda Greenberg, Executive Director of the Ed Foundation. “Our generous corporate matching partners and each donor who contributed during the match have helped ensure that our Santa Monica children benefit from important staff and programs next year. On behalf of our students, we are grateful for all that our donors make possible in our schools.”
Donations made during Pledge Days will fund staff and programs at schools across Santa Monica. Programs funded by donations include elementary arts, instructional assistants in elementary classrooms, 5th grade ballroom dance and a stretch grant for each Santa Monica school. Each school decides how to spend their grant. Most are used for additional arts, STEM or student wellness programs.
“We are incredibly humbled and inspired by the results of this match,” said Julia B. Ladd, Assistant Vice President, Property Management at Santa Monica Place. “It is an honor to partner with the Education Foundation and all the donors in our community to ensure that local Santa Monica public school children are thriving.”
“Thank you to everyone who participated in this worthy cause,” said Steve Solk, president of Consumer Banking for CIT, the parent company of OneWest Bank. “OneWest Bank is committed to investing in the communities where we live and work. We are thrilled to be part of this collaboration to ensure all students in Santa Monica have access to an excellent education.”
As part of Pledge Days, Ed Foundation and PTA representatives were on campuses at all Santa Monica elementary schools to thank donors and encourage others to support programs in Santa Monica public schools. The event also included two one-day Flash Matches. On September 26, FLEX College Prep matched donations up to $2,500 and on September 28 David Yun and the Eighty8 Group matched donations up to $5,000. Annual donations and Ed Foundation endowments are funding $2.6 million in programs during the current school year. Fundraising for 2019-2020 school-year programs will continue through June 30, 2019. For more information or to make a donation to support Santa Monica students, go to smedfoundation.org.
Submitted by Linda Greenberg, Executive Director