scholarship preservation program (SPP) Sponsors Guide
By sharing your talents, time, or financial resources with WEA, you can join hands with others in this grassroots women’s charitable organization to make a huge difference in the lives of Baltimore City children, their families, and our community at large.
Scholarship Preservation Program (SPP)
This important program is a powerful opportunity to support our goals, and it can change your life as well! Sponsors can fund multi-year tuition assistance that enables children in financially challenged families to attend one of Baltimore’s Catholic Community Schools: Archbishop Borders, Holy Angels, Cardinal Shehan, and Saints James and John. SPP scholarships level the playing field for our kids and give parents peace of mind from year to year, knowing their children can continue to grow and thrive in their educations. You can watch your generosity blossom into viable achievements as your student progresses through graduation, prepared for the continuum of higher learning. The joy of personally helping your student secure an avenue for a successful future simply cannot be measured. These are distinct benefits to becoming an SPP sponsor!
Women’s Education Alliance (WEA) assists in the education and formation of qualified Pre-K through 8th grade students by providing scholarships to Catholic Community Schools serving economically disadvantaged families in Baltimore City. In addition to a quality academic education, WEA also provides school support services that enhance each student’s learning experience on a cultural, spiritual, physical and social level.
Please review the Frequently Asked Questions below to learn more, and if you wish to participate, please follow these instructions:
Notify your intention to become an SPP sponsor by emailing Betty Contino or calling (410) 456-8228. Your sponsorship will then be recorded and acknowledged. If you would like to pay your first year funding at this time, please submit your donation online or print and mail the Donor Form and mail it to us.
If you would like to provide a One-Time Scholarship (OTS), please submit your donation online or print the Donor Form and mail to WEA, c/o Bull & Associates, 308 West Joppa Road, Towson, MD 21204. Checks are payable to “WEA.”
Frequently Asked Questions
Do I sign a contract to sponsor an SPP child? +
No! Our request is simple: “If God is blessing you, then will you share your blessings with your SPP child?”
What does an SPP scholarship cost? +
Levels of annual sponsorship are:
Star Pupil: $1,000
Teacher’s Helper: $2,000
School Chum: $10,000
Create Your Own Scholarship: $1,000 and up
The Star Pupil category is critical to enrolling children in our schools, as this level ensures they will each have a seat in our classrooms. On average, our SPP students require approximately $2,300 each year; typically, needs range from $1,000 to $4,000 per child.
How many years does my SPP sponsorship run? +
While WEA hopes that our SPP sponsors are with us until we no longer need to help children attend our schools, we would like you to sponsor your student for five years. Again, if God continues to bless you, we hope you will continue to bless a child, year after year without limit!
What if I am unable to provide that level of financial support? Are there other options? +
Yes. For example, two donors could raise $500 each; or four donors, $250 each. If donors are employed, they may seek employer matching funds. Or, a donor may ask family and friends to form a team to help raise funds for the level they are seeking. Once you have created a plan that works for you, WEA can set up the process accordingly.
How do I make my first scholarship payment and renewals? +
SPP sponsors typically pay annually, by check or credit card; other arrangements can be made upon request. WEA will notify you in advance of your annual renewal date, which will be the anniversary of the month you fund a scholarship, unless your circumstances require a different date. WEA operates on a fiscal year ending June 30. Renewal letters will be sent on your anniversary.
What if I am unable to continue my sponsorship? +
WEA understands that financial circumstances change. Should this occur, let us know. Depending on whether it is a temporary or permanent change, WEA will either fund the scholarship or find another sponsor for your child. Your student will continue to receive the same financial support.
When will my SPP scholar be assigned? Will I be part of the selection process? +
After submitting a request – online, by email or by phone – you will be contacted by a WEA volunteer to discuss the details of your plan. Depending on the month, there could be children waiting for sponsors; a student would be assigned to you immediately. If the school year is almost over, a child would be assigned to you when the next school year begins. If you have certain requests – for example, the school, gender or age/grade of your student – WEA will make every attempt to accommodate your preferences.
What opportunities will I have to meet and get to know my student? +
SPP KIDS BOWLING PARTY Each February, SPP kids from all four schools come together for a fun bowling party. Sponsors are encouraged to attend and to bring friends who may like to see what SPP is all about. The children bowl and enjoy pizza, drinks and dessert from 10:30am to 12:30pm. They will love to see and talk to you there!
JUICE & DONUTS DAY Each December, WEA hosts a 90-minute “Juice & Donuts Day” at each of the four schools. SPP sponsors and students become acquainted while working together on simple pre-holiday craft projects or other activities.
Should I bring a gift to my student at the Juice & Donuts Day? +
Because this event is held during the Christmas season, sponsors may want to bring personal gifts. You may do so; however, it is not necessary, as WEA provides a goody bag for every SPP child. If you do bring a gift, it should be small in size such as a gift card, and of nominal cost since children will view each other’s gifts. For a very young student, avoid gift cards, as they can be lost during the day. A small toy or book is suggested. Please do not bring candy or food items!
What if I am unable to participate in these events? +
While your student will want to share get-togethers with you, it isn’t always possible for SPP sponsors to attend these events. Two options are available: you can arrange for a friend or family member to take your place, or a WEA volunteer can substitute for you. Announcements and reminders with full details will be sent in advance of each event. If you cannot attend, please note on your RSVP if you would like WEA to arrange for a volunteer.
Can I contact my student outside of WEA events? +
Students love to get mail, and your correspondence will remind them of your commitment to their education. SPP students can communicate with you during the school year via the school’s email and by mail. You may send notes and cards to your elementary school student by mail to their school, c/o the School Principal; or to your middle school student via the school’s email address.
Is it permissible to meet with my student outside of the school or WEA setting? +
If you would like to visit your student outside of school or WEA events, you must make arrangements through the School Principal and the child’s parent(s). Use the contact information on the back page to set up this option.
Can I still be a sponsor if my student withdraws from his or her school? +
Yes! If your student transfers to another school, there are always others in need of scholarships. WEA can match you with another deserving student.
What happens when my student graduates? +
We hope you will join the celebration and attend your student’s graduation. WEA will notify you of the graduation date and location. No doubt it will be a memorable experience for both you and your student. After graduation, WEA hopes you will consider helping another child fulfill his or her dream by continuing your generosity as an SPP sponsor.
Are there other scholarship avenues available? +
Yes, and they are very important! Donors can contribute to one-time scholarships (OTS) at any time and for any amount. These donations bridge the gap for our “Rising Stars,” students without sponsors but who need financial support to remain in our schools. Please see contribution instructions on the back page. Please mark OTS on your check, or in the Comments section if you donate online.
What other ways can I become involved with WEA? +
There are numerous opportunities to become part of the WEA family because WEA provides many sources of support to our four schools. The needs are great: basic back-to-school supply drives, summer reading programs, summer camps, volunteering in the schools and at events, technology and curriculum grants, and participating in WEA events such as our Annual WEA Bowl, Fall Luncheon, or July Happy Hour to thank our supporters and invite new participants. Tell us your ideas and talents, and we will find an avenue to your liking!