Phoenix Suns Charities Grant

I have good news today: Phoenix Suns Charities selected NRC for a 2011 program grant. The Suns provide program grants ranging from $1,000 to $10,000 to Arizona nonprofit organizations like National Relief Charities whose programs and activities focus on helping children and families maximize their potential. Over time, the Suns have donated over $1 million in grants to charitable organizations in Arizona. We are excited to be recognized by a great organization like the Suns, and we are equally excited about what the Suns grant will help us do.

Our goal is to provide school supplies to at least 10,000 Native American children who attend reservation schools in Arizona. Bureau of Indian Education schools on the reservations are typically in the lowest 10% of funding by the U.S. Department of Education. Principals at schools who partner with NRC say that fall enrollment is often low due to lack of school supplies and back to school clothing – items that are unavailable in local stores or unaffordable for families who have to choose between food and gas or school supplies and clothing.

In Arizona, the high school dropout rate for Native American children ranges from 39% to 48%. The overall college going rate is low, about 17 in 100. And we know that the more learned, the more earned, and vice versa. The lower the education level, the lower the earnings level. Students who dropped out in 2008 can expect $260,000 in lost income during their lifetime. This does not bode well for self-sufficiency and educational support can help to create positive change.

The Suns grant will help NRC’s reservation school partners in Arizona ensure that every child in their school starts the year on a level playing field and has the tools to learn.

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