Adopt-A-Classroom Raises $25,000

Our Kiawah Cares Adopt-a-Classroom campaign was a huge success! Over 125 classrooms were adopted (for $200 each) with over $25,000 in donations! We were so fortunate to not only meet the goals for the Kiawah Women’s Group, Angel Oak and Frierson Elementary schools but were able to share funds with each Sea Islands public school to support their classroom needs.

This lifted a heavy financial burden off the teachers and gave them the means to purchase the supplies they needed that would have been impossible otherwise.

This also supported the Kiawah Women’s Group’s Backpack Buddies program, which gives food and snacks for students to take home each weekend so they don’t go hungry.

We are so grateful for your contributions!

You Committed to Helping 90 Sea Island Kids Through Adopt-a-Student

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Adopt-a-Student had its most successful year yet! A big thanks to Kiawah Cares supporters, who raised $18,000 for this important program. 90 students at Angel Oak and Frierson elementary schools will benefit because of your support, 30 more than we originally hoped!

The Kiawah Women’s Foundation will be awarded $9,000 for their back pack buddies program, which helps meet needs for children who may otherwise lack access to adequate nutrition. Another $9,000 will provide properly fitting, appropriate uniforms for at-risk students during the 2017-2018 school year.

Thank you to all those who made a gift to this important program!

Hands of Christ Serves 251 Local Children

Thank you to everyone who came out to the Hands of Christ uniform distribution at Hebron Zion Presbyterian Church on July 27.

Kiawah Cares volunteers helped ensure that 251 children would be prepared to learn when school starts this year. What an incredible number of children served!

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Kiawah Giving Month Raised 118% of Goal!

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We can’t say thank you enough!

You made Kiawah Giving Month a huge success! We raised 118% of our goal amount: $41,305.20 in total. In addition, the Kiawah Cares Foundation matched the first $20,000 dollars in donations. Our incredible overall total was $61,305.20, all going to help meet needs on the Sea Islands.

Kiawah Cares Foundation Board Treasurer Liz Burwell and Secretary Ian Freeman presented checks to the Community Home Improvement Program (CHIP Ministry) of Johns Island Presbyterian Church and Communities In Schools (CIS). Read more about CIS’ impact in the following article.

CIS will apply the funds toward student support specialist positions at St. John’s High School and Angel Oak Elementary. CHIP Ministry will use their funds to complete repairs to the homes of Sea Island seniors.

Once again, thank you to our members for caring so much about our island neighbors!


Angel Oak Students Send Their Gratitude

Kiawah Cares once again sponsored Angel Oak Elementary School’s fifth grade trip to the Barrier Islands camp on Seabrook Island, ensuring that all eligible students were able to attend regardless of financial constraints. The kids had a great time learning about the ecosystem of the barrier islands.

The pictures below include some of the students at camp and some of their beautiful thank you cards.

Camp St Christopher 2017


Kiawah Cares Welcomes Angel Oak Student for a Day at the Beach

Beach Day CollageKiawah Cares volunteers were so excited to welcome students from Angel Oak Elementary School for the 2017 Youth Beach Day.

The students worked hard all year, excelling in the Million Minutes program and then forming their own book club. As a reward for their diligence, Kiawah Cares invited them out to Kiawah’s beautiful beach.

The students played in the water, flew kites and learned about sea life before enjoying a buffet lunch at Night Heron Park, courtesy of the Kiawah Women’s Group.

Afterward, the students got to meet some local wildlife, including a snake and baby alligator, and learn from KICA biologists.

Kiawah Cares’ Youth Beach Day is an annual event which groups local students with Kiawah Island volunteers, offering them a day of learning and recreation.

Thank you to the Kiawah Women’s Foundation for coordinating and providing a delicious lunch for students and volunteers. Another big thank you goes out to all our wonderful Kiawah Cares volunteers, who act as one-on-one chaperones during this event and keep making each year a special day for these students.

See you next year at Youth Beach Day!

Reading Partners Sends Their Gratitude

reading-partners-logo-homeAnother incredible program funded by the Kiawah Cup is Reading Partners’ For the Love of Reading program, which helps under-resourced students have the same summer reading advantages as higher-income students. This grant will cover 92 percent of students enrolled in this program at Angel Oak and Frierson elementary schools.

As Executive Director Karen Greenho states in her letter (view letter from Reading Partners’ Karen Greenho), “Literacy is the foundation for all future learning.” It’s also one of Kiawah Cares’s most important initiatives on the Sea Islands.

Thank you for making this support possible!

Your Generosity Changes Lives!

temp book stripThanks to your generous support, a portion of the funds raised at the Kiawah Cup Beach Horse Race will fund Begin with Books for the Johns and Wadmalaw island communities for one year. The $13,815 contribution to Begin With Books, made possible by Kiawah Cup attendees, will provide books to 881 children from Johns Island and 79 children from Wadmalaw Island from birth until five years old.

KN R's new book Jake croppedThis program allows families to create an in-home library and encourage reading to their children at an early age. Making books familiar and accessible is the first and best step toward overcoming the word and achievement gaps that diminish many children’s future chances of success.

Below is a word of thanks to the Kiawah community that we wanted to share.

Dear Kiawah Cares,

Thank you. Every child in every home on Johns and Wadmalaw islands has the opportunity to grow up with books, thanks to you. Every child has the opportunity to learn about something new, to learn about another language, to laugh over a rhyme, to memorize a story, to love an animal character.

Every child will take a stronger step into the future because of the residents of Kiawah who care so much.

For every book for every child, thank you              -Patty Bennett-Uffelman


YoArt! Is Teaching Students to Love Technology and Art


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Take a trip down to the main library (68 Calhoun St, Charleston) from May 1 – June 11 for a look at the beautiful art created by local students.

Kiawah Cares annually supports the YoArt! program in Angel Oak Elementary, which teaches students to use technology and make presentations through art.

The Kiawah Island Photography Club host YoArt! students at Night Heron Park annually, helping the students to take beautiful nature shots in the island environment.

YoArt! Coding Course at Frierson and Mt. Zion elementary schools

If you think kids should be learning to use technology as soon as they can, look no further than the Kiawah Cares-sponsored coding classes at Mt. Zion on Johns Island and Frierson on Wadmalaw Island. These elementary students are engaged using HTML and CSS – the basics of web design.

Check out the video below of a class to see how YoArt! brings technology into classrooms.


Kiawah Cares Sponsors Inspirational Movie Viewing for Haut Gap Girls

Photo by Ann Knechtel

Photo by Ann Knechtel.

Kiawah Cares was excited to be able to sponsor 120 Haut Gap students to see the movie Hidden Figures and listen to a talk by Yolonda Zanders-Brown, a Charleston native and local space and naval engineer.

The inspirational film served as a reminder to the 120 girls of their outstanding potential. Read more in the Island Connection’s Feb. 23 article, “Haut Gap Students Learn About ‘Girl Power.’”