This post was written by Rita Gorenberg, PR manager
A little over four years ago, the Marketing team and I were seeing more and more news stories about drastic school budget cuts and the loss of important school programs. For more than 30 years, The Clorox Company Foundation has supported K-12 education and youth development in the San Francisco Bay Area, but with all these budget cuts we felt it was time to expand our dedication and develop a national program to help school programs in need throughout the U.S. And so a room full of people wanting to make a difference rallied together and created the Power A Bright Future school grant program.
In our first year, we awarded five grants totaling $50,000. This year, our fourth, we awarded seven grants totaling $200,000!
Although I’ve been with the program since its inception, this past December was the first time I was able to participate in the selection process for the three Judge’s Pick grant winners. I was stoked (and that’s putting it mildly) to know I was going to help make a difference. Sure, I’ve donated to causes before, but this felt different. These grants would help change three schools in ways that I could never dream to do on my own.
As the other judges and I excitedly started to read through the more than 2,500 nominations, I realized this wasn’t going to be an easy task. With every entry there seemed to be another school program even more deserving than the last. But, after four grueling days, we had our winners. Through these grants we will help disabled children in Ohio enjoy the playground with their friends, inspire a Connecticut school and community with a renovated auditorium and bring a Colorado school into the 21st century with a technology upgrade.
Selecting these grant recipients was one of my most challenging decisions, but also one of the most rewarding. More than knowing we were helping to make a difference, it was the realization we were able to accomplish all this out of a small seed of an idea four years ago: “Let’s do more to help schools.”
Rita Gorenberg is the PR manager for Clorox’s cleaning and laundry products and the Power A Bright Future school grant program.