Teach a man to fish…..

Many have heard the saying “Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day.  Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.” – Old Chinese Proverb

When we consider the school supplies drive and the donations that The Education Foundation of BCPS has received from the community through the Tools for School! campaign, we see an immediate benefit to the classroom and the students who attend BCPS schools.  Teachers are receiving the tools they need to teach our students to learn how to “fish”.  They have the resources to focus on learning.  Our community has found many ways to give, from collecting supplies in their offices, organizations, places of worship, and neighborhoods.  They have volunteered numerous hours and donated funds to sustain the purchase of new supplies for our students in need.

The generosity and support from our community continues to grow even after the successful, Saturday, August 25th, Tools for School! distribution of supplies to 800+ BCPS teachers at Boscov’s White Marsh.

The creativity behind collecting and providing new school supplies continues to thrive at the foundation in ways we couldn’t even imagine.

A special story we’d like to share includes a student, Ayala Asher, who decided she wanted to give back to her community in a way that would impact other students.  At her recent Bat Mitzvah, she stated in her sermon that “we have a personal responsibility to be better people… it is our responsibility to find the good and the happiness, and to strive to seek justice.”  For that reason, Ayala choose to place baskets of brand new schools supplies, including notebooks, pencils, crayons, markers, glue and folders on the tables at her Bat Mitzvah celebration; thirty baskets, for thirty students in need of the basic tools for learning.  As Ayala stated, “Every child should have the opportunity to learn without worrying about paying for pencils and paper, and teachers often bear the financial burden of making sure their students are equipped to learn.”

Ayala’s schools supply centerpieces were donated to the foundation to provide resources to teachers from all around the county to support disadvantaged students who cannot afford them. Ayala stated in the closing of her sermon, “Who knows, maybe this kind of idea will spread, and people will then pay it forward.”  It is our hope at the foundation that others in our community, will choose to participate like Ayala did, in the Tools for School! campaign, and continue to foster creative ways to give.

Thank you Ayala for your thoughtful kindness and generosity.  We also thank Ayala’s parents who helped bring Ayala’s idea to fruition and delivered the school supply baskets to the foundation’s headquarters.

On a final note, stories like this are not uncommonly found among today’s youth.  We celebrate the future citizens, our children, through the observation of our students.  If all the amazing stories we hear could be told, we would find proof in knowing that today’s youth are truly contributing to a brighter future.