The Prairie Spirit Schools Foundation (PSSF) has been a part of the community since 2014 and was created to encourage and facilitate community and corporate support and involvement in public education. Throughout the past six years, the PSSF has held numerous events and fundraisers with all funds raised going towards supporting enhanced learning opportunities for the students within the Prairie Spirit School Division.
With Covid-19 forcing this year’s in-person events to be cancelled, the PSSF has decided to try something new to help raise funds. Kari Dean, the PSSF Executive Director is excited about the new fundraiser, which will be an online silent auction that includes a wide variety of items donated by local individuals and businesses within the Prairie School Division region. “We want to be able to have a safe event, but still highlight the amazing things our students are doing. That is what the Foundation is really about – being that enhanced step that can help out with the extra projects that may not always be covered by the budget. These projects are very meaningful and necessary; however, there isn’t always the funds to do it, so we want to make sure that these continue to take place by providing some additional funds. We work very closely with the division and hear the expectations and visions that they have. Our goal is to support those initiatives that are already in place and enhance them,” Dean explained.
The online silent auction is expected to take place from Thursday, December 10 to Wednesday, December 16 with new items being added throughout the week. The link for the auction can be found by going to the ‘Prairie Spirit Schools Foundation‘ Facebook page. The auction page will have items listed and those interested can place bids, share with friends and family and continue to watch the items they want to bid on. Items included range from home décor, experiences, gift baskets, jewelry and much more. “We have received so many generous donations from many incredible businesses. This year has impacted us all in many different ways, so to see the support that we have received is greatly appreciated,” Dean said.
A large focus this year has been to continue to support our local businesses, organizations and non-profits, and Dean herself is a big believer in this. “In my mind, this auction gives you a great chance to shop local. By supporting this event, you are giving back to a local non-profit that supports the students and these items are all from a business or a person from our region that has supported the Foundation as well. It is a great opportunity to purchase Christmas gifts for family members, for teachers, or even for yourself.”
Another way that the PSSF has made it available to contribute is through their Legacy and Memorial Fund at SARCAN. When you take bottles and cans into SARCAN, you can donate to this initiative by using the phrase LEGACY, which is available at all depots across the province.
“These funds are designated for professional development for the educators within the Foundation. This is an ongoing option and we wanted something easy for people to do. Even if it is a few dollars, every little bit adds up and helps to provide opportunities for educators. My mom was a teacher for over 30 years, and I have seen firsthand the impact that educators can have on their students. Educators play a huge role in shaping students for the future, so we want to be able to support them in any way we can,” Dean explained.
If you are looking for a way to get into the Christmas spirit this year, be sure to take part in the Great Big Sing “Christmas Edition” presented by Prairie Spirit School Division Music. This will be taking place in the Division Office from 11am-12pm on Wednesday December 16th. The event will be streamed live with access to a pdf song book for anyone that wants to tune in and sing/play along or request a seasonal song from our PSSD House Band! A special announcement regarding Resonate and how the Foundation and a new partner are helping out will also be made at this event as well! We hope you will ‘tune’ in!
This year, the PSSF was a finalist in the 2020 Warman, Martensville and Region Business Excellence Awards (WMEBXA) for their second time. “I can’t even begin to explain how honoured we were to not only be a finalist, but to just be nominated. It was such an incredible event and to be included among the amazing businesses and other non-profits was such a great feeling,” Dean noted.
More information about the Prairie Spirit Schools Foundation can be found at https://prairiespiritschoolsfoundation.ca.