“Strengthening Our Community” is the theme of the inaugural Union Week for the Eden Prairie Education Association (EPEA) and its counterpart, the Eden Prairie Preschool Education Association (EPPEA).
The week, from April 18-22, involves not only events for members to learn about the union and its initiatives, but also two events aimed at helping the broader community.
Educators at all levels in Eden Prairie Schools are contributing to a food drive to help PROP’s Summer Food for Kids Program.
Dominic Kirkpatrick, president of the EPEA, stressed that this program is so important to the community because it comes at a time “when our students cannot rely on meals typically available during the school year.” Union educators will be contributing such staples as macaroni and cheese, tuna and pasta sauce.
“When summer is here, we want parents and children to look forward to it,” says Mary Brown, director of development at PROP. “But if you’re experiencing food insecurity, summer vacation becomes a concern.”
In the past, the program has fed over 800 children during the summer. Families with school-age children can fill out a survey of their kids’ dietary preferences. They are then given a custom pack of food for each child with every order.
“We are so gratefully to the community for putting these food drives together,” Brown says. “No one wants a child to be hungry.”
If you are interested in following the EPEA’s lead and sponsoring a drive, Brown can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
In addition to the food drive, educators are running a scholarship raffle. Each year the EPEA and EPPEA offer $1,000 scholarships to graduating seniors interested in pursuing a career in education. This year several local businesses have teamed up to offer a variety of gift cards and prizes.
To donate and enter the raffle, visit the website. Educators hope to raise enough funds to offer at least two scholarships this year. Donations are accepted until 11 a.m. Saturday, April 23.
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