By NICHOLAS SAKELARIS | CoServ
Teachers can’t get enough hand sanitizer and masks – not to mention appreciation and thank yous – as they start in-person learning this school year.
Teachers in Frisco ISD will have these items and acknowledgment thanks to donations from CoServ, area businesses and sports teams. More than 4,500 goody bags will be distributed to the teachers this week just as students are returning for in-person learning.
“It is important that our teachers see how much they are valued and appreciated by parents and the community during this time,” said Dr. Mike Waldrip, Frisco ISD Superintendent. “Efforts like these lift them up and remind them that the whole community is in their corner. That sense of support is critical to our work to educate and care for our students in these challenging circumstances.”
Operation Better Together started as a passion project for Altair Global, a corporate relocation firm in Frisco, but Altair employees quickly realized they would need help to get it done. Frisco Mayor Jeff Cheney recommended that they reach out to CoServ. They did and, in turn, CoServ’s Community Engagement Team recruited the Frisco RoughRiders, the Texas Legends and FC Dallas to help out.
CoServ has been the title sponsor for Frisco ISD’s New Teacher Welcome event for several years, so Operation Better Together was just a natural extension and a great way to give back to all teachers in the district.
Soon, other businesses got involved, including BENDT Distilling, which donated thousands of bottles of hand sanitizer, and Market Street, which donated bottled water. Plato’s Closet secured a lower price from their supplier for the face masks.
“Getting the recommendation from Mayor Cheney to work on a project as meaningful as this just speaks to the great relationship we have built with the city of Frisco,” CoServ CEO and President Donnie Clary said. “We are an energy company, yet our focus is always on people, so being able to show Frisco ISD teachers how much we appreciate them, alongside so many other great local companies, is awesome.”
The Frisco Chamber of Commerce rallied many of the businesses to participate and come together for this cause.
""It is so amazing to see so many organizations in the community, members of the chamber and non-members alike, come together for the greater good," said Tony Felker, President and CEO of the Frisco Chamber of Commerce. "It is so heartwarming to see the overwhelming support for our Frisco teachers during challenging times like these!"
Altogether, Operation Better Together collected more than $80,000 in cash, donations and in-kind labor from area businesses and sports teams to put together about 4,500 gift bags for every Frisco teacher.
“This initiative started as a passion project from one of our team members,” said Chad Sterling, CEO for Altair Global. “Capitalizing on her dedication and tenacity, Altair Global picked up the torch and was able to gather donations and resources from our community of supplier partners and other local businesses.
"We are extremely honored to be able to provide this small token of appreciation for FISD teachers to extend our gratitude and support as this unique school year begins.”
For more about CoServ's Academic Initiatives, please click here.