A unique educational program designed to connect elementary students with community leaders has received a financial boost from the Tomah Health Community Foundation.
The Tomah Junior Achievement program was the recipient of a $1,500 donation from the foundation Sept. 7. “We are trying to help out our local community and Junior Achievement is one of those programs that help our young people,” Foundation president Brian Eirschele said of the donation.
Junior Achievement is the world’s largest organization dedicated to educating students in grades kindergarten thru high school about entrepreneurship, work readiness and financial literacy through hands-on programs.
Tomah Junior Achievement representative Laurie Brown said donations are vital to the local program. “Junior Achievement is run totally on donations from businesses like the foundation.”
Brown said they offered the program to students in fourth and fifth grades in the Tomah Area School District during the 2022-2023 school year and are hoping to expand it to additional grades this school year.
She said JA’s unique approach allows volunteers from the community to deliver the curriculum while sharing their experiences with students “I think the volunteers get as much out of the program as the kids do,” said Brown who also taught the class. “It was amazing how sharp and how thirsty they are to know what is going on and things that normally are not covered in the school’s curriculum. They love it when the Junior Achievement people come in,” said Brown.
Since the program is so dependent on donations and volunteers, Brown said businesses interested in participating in the program with volunteers or financial support can contact her at CCF Bank in Tomah at (608)374-5521.
“We can always use volunteers, and the more people kids get exposed to the better it is for everyone,” said Brown.