Everyone’s enjoying their summer, but it’s not too early to start thinking Back-to-School! The Tallahassee Board of REALTORS® is collecting backpacks and school supplies in July and August to help local kids get a great start to the school year.
Simply drop off new backpacks and supplies (school supply lists are available at local stores) at TBR, and we’ll be sure they get to children in need through Big Brothers Big Sisters, the Children’s Home Society, and the Early Learning Coalition. Read below to learn more about these great local organizations and the TBR members who actively support them.
Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Big Bend
Sarah Kosturko (PrimeSouth Fezler, Russell and Ferrie) has been an in-school mentor for three years with Big Brothers Big Sisters:
“I chose the school setting as I felt the weekly consistency was important, as often the children in this program have little to no consistency in their lives. Some of the children come from very broken or strained family situations which makes this program so much more valuable than just aiding them in the educational system. Being a role model for my child is always life changing, both for me and for them—having someone for just an hour a week, who devotes full attention to them, cares about who they are, what their dreams are, and their personal growth, affects them profoundly. I am hopeful that by spotlighting this agency in the backpack drive that other REALTORS® will also see how one hour a week is virtually an insignificant sacrifice of our time when it is given to a child who is in need of hope for their future.”
Children’s Home Society of Florida
Children’s Home Society of Florida (CHS) began in Jacksonville in 1905 as an adoption agency. In 1964 the Tallahassee office (North Central Division) started serving the eight counties of the Big Bend Region. CHS has transformed to an agency that supports kids who have been abused through its Child Advocacy Center, provides early interventions for kids with developmental delays, foster care and transitional living programs, and, of course, adoption services.
Ted Thomas (Thomas Mitchell Realty) was on the CHS Board of Directors for 13 years. During that time, he served as Chairman of the Chefs’ Sampler for two years, where they raised between $50-100,000 from the event, thanks to the great participation from the community. Ted also chaired the building fundraising committee, raising $2 million to build what is now a premier facility for the kids in our community and the surrounding counties.
Early Learning Coalition
Headquartered in Tallahassee, the Early Learning Coalition (ELC) proudly serves Gadsden, Jefferson, Leon, Liberty, Madison, Taylor, and Wakulla counties. Throughout the ELC’s history, the Board and staff have strived to provide a holistic service delivery system that is responsive to needs of families and communities while maintaining effective and efficient business practices supporting the following primary goals: children are ready for success when they enter school; and families have access to the quality child care services and assistance they need. The ELC staff work every day at effectively connecting approximately 7,000 children and their families to the early learning program that best meets the needs of the child and family. Working with a network of over 300 child care programs and local community partners, the ELC provides a comprehensive system of services.
Additionally, the ELC has a strong network of community partners and volunteers that are an integral component of the ELC’s service delivery system. Working with the community, the ELC is the catalyst working to help families be ready to work and children ready to learn.