Submitted by Brett R Carlson.
A group of alumni from Clover Park High School (Lakewood, WA) has raised more than $20,000 to honor a former school counselor and provide additional support for current students. The Jerry Storvick Fund was created through a partnership with InvestED, one of the state’s leading education nonprofits.
“Jerry’s passion was helping students discover their full potential,” says Stephen Michaud, Chair of The Jerry Storvick Fund Founders Committee. “He was the real deal. He understood how to connect with us as individuals. That was important, because all of us were navigating different challenges and obstacles in our lives.”
Jerry Storvick came to Lakewood, WA in the late 1950s, after a stint in the Navy. He served first as a teacher at Clover Park High School, then became a guidance counselor and remained on staff for more than 30 years. Over the years, Jerry was beloved by hundreds of students. After a life filled with rich memories and friendships, he passed away in March, 2018 at the age of 88.
“A group of us thought it would be fitting to honor Jerry’s legacy by supporting current students,” says Michaud. “InvestED has been an incredible partner for our team. They are thoughtful in their approach to helping kids and they have the flexibility and experience to get it done.”
With nearly 60 years of experience, InvestED helps bridge the gap between what families can afford, what schools can support, and what students urgently need. Each year, the organization supports nearly 25,000 individuals by helping educators remove some of the financial or material barriers that impact children from low-income families and communities. Clover Park High School is one of almost 700 secondary schools that receives funding to help cover costs for textbooks, clothing, health expenses, testing fees, sports participation, graduation fees and more.
“We have always been exceptionally grateful for the work of InvestED,” says Tim Stults, Principal of Clover Park High School. “When we met with the alumni group, we were all very impressed by the level of commitment and determination to make this a reality. Now, through this partnership, even more of our students will benefit.”
“We hope that others in the community will see what we’re doing and join us,” says Michaud. “One of our important goals is to someday provide kids with scholarships. Whatever comes next, our group just wants to help as many kids as possible in Jerry’s name.”
“Our founder, Saul Haas, believed that kindness and compassion can have positive, lasting impacts on children who are experiencing hardships due to circumstances beyond their control,” says Andre’ Wesson, InvestED Director of Investments and Partnerships. “It’s always great to collaborate with others who share our values, and it’s an honor to support The Jerry Storvick Fund.”
While InvestED has adapted to changes in education over the last six decades, the COVID-19 pandemic has created unprecedented challenges for students and educators. When school closures began in March, the InvestED board and staff acted quickly to release $250,000 in immediate assistance to support remote learning and nutritional needs for students. The organization also launched the most successful fundraising campaign in its history, raising another $1.2M to support over 100,000 students in more than 200 school districts. One hundred percent of funds were distributed equitably to districts and offered to all students, including elementary students.
“Now that classes have resumed for the fall, InvestED is still on the front lines working to address some of the most urgent and demanding challenges at scale,” says Wesson. “For example, InvestED is serving as the implementation partner for a new effort to help close the digital divide and support remote learning across Washington State.”
The Digital Equity Initiative was launched through All in Washington, in partnership with leading businesses, philanthropy and state officials. The effort is designed to raise additional funds to help schools purchase hardware and devices, access to hot spots, tech support, and other resources needed to fully engage students in remote learning. Funds distributed through this initiative will complement the work of public agencies and expand local capacity to address the many needs created by the COVID-19 pandemic. InvestED will act as a statewide intermediary, providing critical funding to school districts and local school-based foundations.
Learn more or donate to The Jerry Storvick Fund: www.invested.org/campaigns/jerry-storvick
Learn more or donate to the Digital Equity Initiative: allinwa.org/digital-equity/