On November 16, the monthly GRPS principals meeting started like any other, however, it quickly changed. The SAF Ambassadors dressed up in flannel, cargo pants, hiking boots and with walking sticks tromped into the room with a very special purpose. Recognizing that it takes a team to not only survive—but to thrive, the SAF Ambassadors have been called into action!
The SAF Ambassadors are a group of dedicated SAF supporters AND retired GRPS teachers and principals. As former GRPS educators, the Ambassadors help newer educators learn and know about the many ways the Grand Rapids Student Advancement Foundation provides critical resources for their students and schools. They are passionate about the role as an SAF Ambassador because they understand the multitude of needs facing schools each day and how important SAF is to the school.
“I know first-hand the impact SAF had on my school, both as a teacher and later as a principal,” said Pamela Wells-Marcusse, retired GRPS teacher and principal. “SAF was, and is, our ally. Always. They exist solely for GRPS and our students and they are always in our corner.”
During the November principals meeting, the Ambassadors handed out “survival kits” that included a granola bar, a bottle of water and a Sharpie tied up in a bandana. The hijinks worked to grab attention and to achieve the Ambassadors’ first goal: present SAF to the principals in a crazy-fun – but informative – manner.
And just like on the television show, these “Survivors” presented the group with a challenge: become a friend of SAF by “liking” or commenting on the SAF Facebook page. And this is what we heard:
“Thank you SAF for your mini-grant that helped us purchase new recess equipment for our students! We use them EVERYDAY! Thank you again for your continued support! You ROCK! ”
“I continue to be amazed at all SAF does to support GRPS learners. Their future is our future. Thank you for your support!”
“SAF is such a vital part of the success of our schools!! We love and appreciate all the extraordinary experiences the students have because of your hard work!! Thank you, thank you, thank you!”
And the November challenge was only the first of five! From now until Spring Break, a new challenge will be announced each month. Each school that meets at least four of the challenges gets added to a raffle to win a $500 unrestricted grant for that school. SAF will make one grant to an elementary winner and another to a middle or high school winner.