Junior Achievement of Southwest Virginia seeks donations to support local students

Local News

ROANOKE, Va. (WFXR) — The southwest Virginia chapter of Junior Achievement — a partnership between the business community, educators, and volunteers — is hosting a matching gift donation this week to continue supporting the organization’s impact on the future of local children.

Junior Achievement of Southwest Virginia President Katherin Elam says the idea originated after Junior Achievement launched a leadership breakfast featuring Kent Greenawalt — CEO of Foot Levelers in Roanoke and an alum of Junior Achievement — as one of the speakers on Wednesday, March 4. According to Elam, Greenawalt challenged everyone to meet his donation of $25,000 by 11:59 p.m. on Friday, March 6.

Elam says that any gift Junior Achievement can get up to $25,000 will be matched, so members of the organization are looking toward alumni, former board chairs, students, volunteers, and any interested parties to donate to the challenge.

“We are looking for any dollar amounts to help us make that goal,” says Elam. “We’ve impacted 535,000 students in that 62 year history, so we’re hoping some are still around and willing to do that.”

According to Elam, the funds raised will go toward purchasing program kits and ensuring Junior Achievement can reach more than 6,000 students this year.

“Our budget is roughly $300,000 a year, so this will be a big boost for us as we continue throughout the year to make a difference and get those kids excited about being entrepreneurs, as well as learn how to manage their money and, of course, getting ready for the world of work,” says Elam.

Beyond financial donations, however, Elam says that Junior Achievement would like for alumni to serve in mentor roles, offering opportunities for job-shadowing and encouraging students to follow their footsteps as mentors in the future. In addition, alumni can assist in classrooms or volunteer at special events hosted by the organization.

If you would like to support Junior Achievement’s 100 year legacy and impact the future of local children’s future, you can help out with the matching gift challenge by following the link to Junior Achievement of Southwest Virginia’s donations page.

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