Champaign First, UM Foundation supports students, teachers


By Ruth Moore
Champaign First UMC
The year 2020 has been hard on all of our essential workers but the Love, First Student Support Fund of Champaign First UMC is working to make life a bit easier for teachers at Dr. Howard Elementary School in Champaign.  Teachers always have creative and innovative ideas for their classrooms but often can’t execute the ideas because of a lack of funding and time.  That’s where the Student Support Fund steps in!
In late September the Student Support Fund purchased supplies and put together kits for 2 science experiments for 4th grade students.  The teachers were very grateful that they didn’t have to buy supplies out of their own pocket and that they didn’t have to take the time to shop for supplies and organize them for students to use in remote learning.
Champaign First is also supporting the Dr. Howard PTA by collecting Coke product codes and entering the codes into the Coke Gives website.  Each code earns money for the PTA.
Dr. Howard Elementary School began a hybrid learning model on Tuesday, October 27.  The Love First Student Support Fund helped make this transition safer and easier for teachers and students.  Water bottles for students, as well as crayons, scissors, folders, composition notebooks, sit spots (helps students maintain social distancing when sitting on the floor) and mask lanyards (make it easier for students to keep track of their mask) were purchased and delivered to the school.  
Funding from The United Methodist Foundation of the Illinois Great Rivers Annual Conference, Inc., an UMC Emerging Ministries grant, and donations from the Champaign First congregation have allowed the Student Support Fund to respond quickly to the needs of the students and teachers.  It’s all about showing LOVE, FIRST!