2017-09-13 / Front Page

Promise Fund doubles with donation

810-452-2689 • elevine@mihomepaper.com

A Port Sanilac couple’s generosity has doubled the amount of seed money for kindergarten savings accounts.

The Promise Fund, a savings account for every kindergarten students’ in Sanilac County, was established by the Sanilac County Community Foundation this year.

It began with a $50 gift for each savings account for the kindergarten class of 2017.

Thanks to the anonymous couple’s donation of $25,000, the $50 has been matched, giving each kindergartener’s account $100 as a starting point for post-high school education.

“They saw the article that you featured in the Sanilac County News (in June) and knew that it was a program that was going to make a big difference in the lives of our children,” said Melissa Anderson, executive director of the Community Foundation. “One of them is a retired teacher and said that after reading the article they knew this was something they wanted to do. They believe in education, and the possibilities that Promise Funds offer.”

Melissa Anderson Melissa Anderson Anderson said, “We are beyond thrilled that there are people in our community that see the possibilities these Promise Funds open for the children of Sanilac County. These matching dollars have added another level of excitement to the program, and make post-secondary dreams that much more attainable countywide.”

The Community Foundation announced in June that beginning this fall every kindergartener in the county would automatically receive a Promise Fund with $50 set aside for their educational goals beyond high school.

The Foundation worked with the county’s seven school districts and three area banks to establish the long-term savings accounts.

The fund has the potential to grow through private deposits, incentives and matches, such as the Port Sanilac couple’s, during the students’ K-12 career.

“There are additional incentive programs in the works around the county, and we would be excited to welcome additional individuals, organizations and businesses to partner with us to use this programs as a wraparound support system to directly impact our county’s future,” said Anderson.

There are just under 500 kindergarteners enrolled in the seven elementary schools in the county, according to Anderson.

Depending on the school district, students will have a Promise Fund account in either Exchange State Bank, Eastern Michigan Bank or Tri-County Bank.

“Funds may be deposited at any time, but no money can be withdrawn until the child graduates from high school,” Anderson has stated. “At that time, a check will be sent directly to the university, college, or trade school of the student’s choice to help pay the cost of his or her post-secondary education.”

She said, “When you give a child a Promise Fund, you are providing the child with hope and support from the community. It creates an environmental where post-secondary education can be an option for everyone.”

For more information, go online to the Community Foundation’s website, www.sanilacfoundation.org, or call 810-648-3634.

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