Pack Your Backpack and Sharpen Those Pencils...

Wednesday, September 07, 2011

As kids head back to school around the country it's a time to celebrate education but also a time to reflect on the challenges many teachers, students and families face during the school year. It's also the perfect time to highlight the amazing work of our cause partners that are working to improve the lives of kids and teachers around the country.
For many teachers, buying their own supplies has sadly become the norm. We think that's a sad state of affairs, especially given the fact that many teachers are paid so little. And that's why we love DonorsChoose. Through their website ( donors can search for and fund specific 'wishlists' created by public schoolteachers around the country. And once your classroom makes use of their new (video camera, microscope, you name it) you'll get a photo and signed card from the kids who have directly benefitted from your donation thanking you. We think funding a project and gifting that special teacher in your life with our DonorsChoose charm is the perfect way to kick off the school year!

Girls Write Now 
Lee has been mentoring New York teenage girls through this amazing high school program for the past two years. The program matches NYC women who are professional writers with girls from the NYC public school system who aspire to become writers. Mentors meet once a week with mentees to work on school assignments or personal writing projects. In addition, once a month GWN sponsors day long 'seminars' in which mentors and mentees alike explore different genres of writing (if you really want to embarrass Lee ask her to show her work from the 'slam poetry' workshop!) The notebook charm ( supports Girls Write Now - and as Lee (who wears it everywhere) will tell you, is a great way to spread the word about this fantastic cause.

Music and learning go hand in hand. Studies show that if you learn to read music or play an instrument, you'll become a better student. At OrchKIDS, there's no question that's the case. Inspired by El Sistema, the Venezuelan orchestral training program, OrchKIDS pairs vulnerable children from Baltimore with the resources of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra to provide musical training as well as help overcoming the challenges created by poverty. Our saxaphone charm ( comes in both silver and gold - and makes a perfect gift for your favorite music lover!

Check out these great causes - as well as our 25+ other non-profit partners at Happy Back to School!

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