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Donors fulfill Reno teacher’s online plea for art supplies
by Tribune Staff
Dec 13, 2009 | 2073 views | 0 0 comments | 30 30 recommendations | email to a friend | print
RENO – Generous donors have fully funded a project request for classroom materials submitted by Ms. Velazquez, a ninth grade teacher at Reno’s Rainshadow Community Charter High School, online education charity announced Tuesday.

The project is titled “Impacting Lives through Visual Arts!” and it will provide visual arts resources and experiences for 80 students. Twenty-five generous donors contributed $2,908 to the project, which was matched with funds from a grant from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

“Too often, teachers lack critical resources in their classrooms and in many instances they spend their own money trying to provide for their students,” said Charles Best, founder and CEO of “Unfortunately, even hundreds of dollars out of pocket each year doesn’t necessarily cover the cost of what’s needed. That’s where concerned citizens come in; anyone, regardless of means, can donate directly to project requests like Ms. Velazquez’s at”

The Web site received a $4.1 million grant from the Gates Foundation in 2008 to support teachers who aim to promote college-readiness among students in high-need urban and rural public schools.

As Velazquez wrote, “My project needs various rubbing plates, human figure templates, a light box, lots of acrylic paint, face paint, paper-mâché, brushes and canvas. We will use these materials for the coming school year to teach an intensive art exploration course where math, science, history and English will be incorporated into the visual arts. This requires an expense for art supplies.”

In addition to Velazquez’s project, there is one project request in Reno posted at in need of funding. It can be found by using the site’s search tool at

Individual donors can contribute any dollar amount to these and thousands of other projects nationwide at Once a project is completely funded, a team at will purchase the requested materials and send them to the teacher. All donors will receive photos of the project taking place, a thank you letter from the teacher and a cost report showing how each dollar was spent. Donors who give more than $100 will also receive handwritten thank you letters from the students.

Any public school teacher can post a project request at These projects aimed at college readiness in high-need or rural high schools may be eligible for the Double Your Impact match.

To view Velazquez’s funded project request, visit
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