August 02, 2018
This is part three of a series of blogs into our three company initiatives: Going Green, Giving Back and Education. Please read the other two for a complete look at our initiatives.
We believe education is extremely important, and part of providing a good education to our community is to help local schools, in tangible ways, develop and foster equipped learning environments. In doing so, we believe we will help give children opportunities to become future leaders and strong members of their communities.
With that motive in mind, we created the following educational mission statement:
“We seek to provide resources to under-resourced teachers in the Atlanta area, so that they may be better equipped to educate the most underprivileged students in society.”
Under this banner, we began sponsoring several grants in local schools in 2017, and we will continue doing so as long as we are in business. The types of grants we’ve sponsored have ranged in learning areas from Math and Science to Reading and Arts.
Our contributions have provided teachers with general classroom supplies like notebooks, crayons, glue and pencils; books; computers and iPads; and more. All grants thus far have been unrelated to 3D printing. We are not opposed to 3D printing-specific grants, but it’s important to us to help facilitate foundational education across school levels in our community.
To date, we have donated more than $3,000, and we are excited to build upon that as much as we can.
We believe one of society’s greatest problems is income inequality, and more specifically, lack of economic mobility (the ability for a person or family to improve their economic status). In recent years, several large studies have found vertical intergenerational mobility is lower in the United States than in most developed countries.
That’s great, but why does this matter?
Our takeaway from these studies is that as the richest country we offer very little opportunity to the poorest members of society. Through reading additional studies, we discovered the two most important factors in determining economic mobility are family background and education.
While we can’t really do much about family background, we can help provide basic learning tools in the communities we live and work in.
There is a ton of research on economic mobility, including some pretty staggering insights into Atlanta, where we are located. We’ve included links below if you’d like to check them out.
How do you determine your project funding?
Another great question! We do this in a couple of ways. First, there is a great website called DonorsChoose.org. The website makes it easy for anyone to help a classroom in need, in the community of the donor’s choosing, so that the students will have “the tools and experiences they need for a great education.”
Additionally, we have and will continue to work directly with teachers in our community to help provide specific needs to their classrooms and projects.
Do you know how much you will donate in 2018, and is there a limit on the amount of projects you’ll fund?
Yes and no. We have budgeted to donate $5,000 per calendar year to local educational needs. Pointing back to our mission statement, our goal and vision for this initiative is to “provide resources to under-resourced teachers in the Atlanta area, so that they may be better equipped to educate the most underprivileged students in society.”
It does not matter to us whether we fund one big grant or 50 smaller ones. We simply want to follow-through with our mission statement.
So, what’s next?
We are constantly looking for and listening to the needs of teachers in our community. If you happen to have any thoughts on how we can better do that, or any other ideas on how we can support local education, feel free to email your ideas to us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We’d love to hear from you!
P.S. here are a few of the cards we've received from students.
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