Teachers' Toolbox at All Saints' Episcopal Church
On a Sunday night in April, Vicki, a retired teacher, called me. I could hear from her tone that she was frustrated. I asked her what she wanted to talk about and she answered: “I think that we need to do something for our teachers here in Miami, Oklahoma. With all these budget cuts and loss of school based social workers, we need to do something!”
Read about the Teachers’ Toolbox ministry at here.
From that first conversation, the idea for Teachers’ Toolbox was born. In a flurry of activity, we gathered a group of concerned church parishioners, community members, and educators and developed our idea. We would provide school supplies for our teachers so our teachers could save their money.
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During the summer months, we began making calls—connecting with area churches, businesses, and Native American tribes. Each group contributed supplies and made donations, and a small room at the church began to fill with supplies. Bins of crayons, stacks of cardstock, tissues, and notebooks stacked up. In August, the day before school started, we opened our doors to our teachers. Over the last few weeks, 127 teachers came by to pick up school supplies. This year, we are expanding Teachers’ Toolbox to all teachers in Ottawa County, Oklahoma.
The Teachers’ Toolbox Ministry at All Saints has opened All Saints to its community. For a small parish with 20 or 30 on a Sunday morning, our impact is huge. We are visible in our community and making a difference. Reaching out has given us confidence that no matter how small, no matter what age, no matter how much money one has, we can help where we are with what we have.