PRINCEVILLE — The founder of Facebook and his wife are the latest contributors to the Aloha Angels endowed fund, which supports Kauai’s teachers and students.
The $50,000 grant was donated by the Mark Zuckerberg and Priscilla Chan Fund of the Silicon Valley Community Foundation in order to fund, in perpetuity, Adopt a Teacher, Adopt an After-School Club and other programs created and managed by Aloha Angels.
In a letter announcing their gift, Chan and Zuckerberg, who own property in Kilauea and regularly visit Kauai, wrote that they want “to ensure the wonderful efforts of Aloha Angels continue for the long term.”
“The youth-related programs that Aloha Angels provides to help make the education experience better are exemplary,” they wrote. “We love Kauai and are grateful for the opportunity our family has had to spend time in your community.”
Aloha Angels president Ric Cox said the nonprofit needs to raise $200,000 a year to fund both programs.
“Fortunately, most of our donors continue their generosity year after year and more donors are added each year,” he said.
Under Adopt a Teacher, each of 200 homeroom teachers at 12 Kauai elementary schools, and one private middle school, annually receives $500 for classroom supplies and $200 for field trips.
“We are honored and thrilled to have been chosen by two of the world’s most generous philanthropists as a way to support Kauai teachers and students,” Cox said. “We are grateful beyond words.”
Under Adopt an After-School Club, each of 50 teachers at 10 schools receives $1,000 a year to mentor 12 students. The clubs are organized around such activities as art, music, dance, sports, computers, robotics and cooking.
Since 2013, Aloha Angels has raised more than $2 million, including a bequest valued at $900,000. Nearly $1 million has already been distributed as grants.
“Our goal of fully funding Adopt a Teacher and Adopt an After-School Club forever won’t be realized until our endowment reaches $9 million, so we have a long way to go,” said Cox.