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District News

August 19, 2011


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

East Hill Church makes $15,000 donation to Gresham-Barlow School District

Generous donation will help keep after-school program running

The congregation of East Hill Church has donated $15,000 to the Gresham-Barlow School District for its Schools Uniting Neighborhoods (SUN) Program. The church collected the funds from members last December. The SUN Program at Gordon Russell Middle School was in danger of being cut because federal stimulus dollars used to fund the program had run out. The donation from East Hill Church, along with funding from Multnomah County, and the University of Oregon’s Positive Family Support Program, will allow Gordon Russell Middle School to offer the program this coming school year.

“We know schools are in a tough spot during these economic times,” said East Hill Church Pastor Jason Albelo. “The best way for our church to tangibly show its love and support, is to stand in the gap for the difference makers in our community—the teachers who educate our children. This is so important to us as a church family, and it's an honor to be a part of this effort to keep this after-school program intact."

The giving program at East Hill Church is part of a nationwide movement called “Advent Conspiracy,” dedicated to scaling back Christmas-time consumerism by encouraging people to use money they would have spent on gifts and divert it toward a global and local need. Last year, in a down economy, East Hill Church members raised more than $40,000. The SUN School Program at Gordon Russell Middle School was selected by the church as the“local need” for this year’s Advent Conspiracy.

“This donation from the members of East Hill Church will have a tremendous impact on our students,” said Superintendent Jim Schlachter. “The SUN School program provides students with important academic and recreational activities like tutoring and sports. Research shows student achievement and attendance goes up when students have the support this program provides.”

The gift comes on the heels of a previous donation from the church in 2010 of $12,500 for the district’s homeless program. In addition to the church’s generous donation of financial resources, it also plays a leadership role in the school district’s “Community Care Day.” The annual August event brings together volunteers from the community and faith-based organizations to get school grounds ready for the opening of school.

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