Menlo Park-Atherton Education Foundation launches 2022 Fund-a-Need campaign to support student mental health initiatives

by Contributed Content on March 9, 2022

The Menlo Park-Atherton Education Foundation (MPAEF) has launched a $100,000 Fund-a-Need drive to enable the Menlo Park City School District (MPCSD) to further support students’ mental health and emotional well-being across all four district schools – Encinal, Laurel, Oak Knoll, and Hillview.

This funding will also enable MPCSD to continue to provide mental health support to district families. The Fund-a-Need campaign coincides with the MPAEF’s annual auction event, which raises funds to provide high-quality teachers and educational opportunities for students in the Menlo Park City School District. You can donate online now.

Last year, the MPAEF’s Fund-a-Need drive raised nearly $95,000, funding new programs such as the creation of the Hillview Wellness Center, Calming Corners in every K-5 classroom, parent support and coaching provided in partnership with StarVista, and training for MPCSD staff, including training on RULER, a systemic approach to social emotional learning (SEL) developed by the Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence.

The 2022 Fund-a-Need drive will enable MPCSD to continue and expand programs to support students’ mental health and emotional well-being, including a dedicated emotional support dog for each school site, continuation of the Hillview Wellness Center for the 2022-2023 school year, continued free mental health support for all MPCSD families, and continued RULER training for the more than 400 MPCSD staff.

“We are so grateful that the MPAEF has chosen to support mental health for the second year through its Fund-a-Need. We know that our children thrive when they feel connected and seen and their whole-child needs are met,” said Superintendent Erik Burmeister. “The MPCSD community’s gifts to this year’s Fund-a-Need will allow us to expand and continue successful programs like therapy dogs and the RULER framework that are making a big difference in the daily lives of our kids. Mental health support is a need that never goes away, and we appreciate the generous support to continue our work in this area, particularly as we meet the pandemic-related mental health and social emotional needs of our families and staff.”

The MPAEF Online Auction, which includes over 150 items across categories such as Adventures and Travel, Food and Wine, Sports, and much more, opens to the public at 11:00 am on Wednesday, March 16, 2022, and ends at 9:00 pm on Monday, March 21, 2022.

Pictured is Eclair, Hillview’s emotional support dog.

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