INK! recently received a generous donation of $37,187.84 from Publix Super Markets, Inc. to benefit the nonprofit’s Tools 4 Schools program. Barry Rickelman, Publix District Manager, along with representatives from the management teams at local Publix retail stores recently presented Cathy Newman, INK! Executive Director and staff members with the charitable contribution.
Thank you, Publix Customers and Associates!
“Publix is honored to support INK!’s efforts to help provide school supplies to students in need so they can focus on what’s most important, learning,” said Hannah Herring, Publix media relations manager. “We are grateful to our customers and associates for their generous giving which made this donation possible.”
“We greatly appreciate this donation from Publix and Publix customers,” said Newman. “During the 2022 to 2023 school year, Tools 4 Schools filled more than 1,950 supply orders for public school classrooms in St. Johns County saving teachers approximately $130,000 in out-of-pocket costs to provide materials for their students,” she said. “The donation from Publix will fund the purchase of much needed educational supplies for teachers and students throughout the county.”
Nationwide Teachers Spend $860 on School Supplies Annually
According to a 2023 national survey conducted by AdoptAClassroom.org, on average, teachers across the country spend $860 of their own money purchasing school supplies for students and classrooms. INK!’s Tools 4 Schools program seeks to minimize expenses for educators and provide the academic supplies necessary for success with a goal of serving approximately 3,200 teachers and 51,000 students countywide.
INK! launched the Tools 4 Schools program 14 years ago to provide public school teachers in St. Johns County access to free school supplies for their students. Teachers can order needed supplies online directly from INK! during the school year. Once an order is received, volunteers fill each order and deliver items to the teacher’s school. During the last two school years, teacher supply orders have increased by 40 percent each year. For the 2023 to 2024 school year, INK! projects the savings to teachers will be approximately $150,000.