The 2020 Polar Bear Fund Initiative
See the donation information at the right.
Why this Year is Important:
Your help is especially needed this year. What would have been the 37th Annual Northridge Optimist Club Golf Scramble fundraiser, usually held in September, has been cancelled for 2020 due to the pandemic situation. Since this golf event is held for the benefit of the Polar Bear Foundation Fund, there will be no funds to add the the foundation for the coming school year without additional support from the community.
The 2019 golf outing fundraiser contributed about $5000 to the foundation from donations, sponsorships, and golfing fees, which covered the grants for the 2019-2020 school year. The Donors and hole sponsors are recognized in the 2019 event program on the event page on this website 2019 Northridge Optimist Scramble Report(CLICK HERE) - the sponsorship recognition list is shown at the bottom of the web page. Donors to the fund for 2020 will be recognized in a similar way on the club website.
What is the Northridge Polar Bear Foundation Fund?
The THE NORTHRIDGE POLAR BEAR FOUNDATION FUND was started by Northridge Local Schools as an endowment with The Dayton Foundation for funding school related programs that were not covered by school district budgets. The fund was started with an initial investment of $23,000, $16,000 of which was donated by Northridge Optimist Club. The stipulation for the use of funds was to preclude its use for scholarships.
The disbursement of funds is handled as a grant process, with an advisory committee that evaluates applications for funds. The Northridge Optimist Club has three members on the advisory committee, which also includes the Superintendent of Northridge Schools, and a representative from The Dayton Foundation. The application form is made available through the school.
Several grants have been made over the past few years for various educational programs initiated by teachers for enhancing and developing students' reading, writing, vocabulary, creative, and organizing skills. In July of 2016 the club donated an additional $5,000 to the Polar Bear Fund. As of 2020 the club has contributed nearly $30,000 to the Polar Bear Fund and awards have been granted for about the same amount. The fund is currently disbursing about $4500 or more per school year for educational enhancements to benefit the learning experience of Northridge students of all grade levels.
The Northridge Optimist Club is proud of its contributions to this fund and recognizes the value of enhancing the educational experience for Northridge students.
Some Examples of Polar Bear Grants:
A total of $5084 in grants were awarded in the 2019-2020 school year, to supplement several educational programs, including the following:
• An awards dinner honoring the academically top 20% of graduating seniors
• A "great books" program for 4th grade language arts students
• Books for a 7th grade classroom
• High school art projects
• Math study programs for grades 3 and 5
• Science projects for STEM students
• Social skills programs for K-4
• "Girls on the Run" programs for grades 3 and 5
• Books designed for special ed students
• Two Muse Machine performances at the school for grades 6-12
These are typical of the types of programs that are supported - things that fall outside of what is provided by the school district curriculum, but that provide great enrichment and added scope to the student experience.
Secure online credit card donations to the Northridge Polar Bear Foundation Fund can be made directly to The Dayton Foundation by clicking the "Donate" button which will transfer you from this website to the appropriate fund donation page on The Dayton Foundation's website.
Thank you for your desire to contribute and help make a difference. Please note the Northridge Polar Bear Foundation Fund #3451 is a component fund of The Dayton Foundation, and we process all gifts and donations through their website. Kindly click the ‘Donate’ button and you will be redirected to the foundation's website where you will be able to contribute to the Northridge Polar Bear Foundation Fund #3451. Thank you for your support!
If you prefer to donate by check, you may download a printable mail-in form by clicking the button below. Checks should be made out to The Dayton Foundation, with "for the Northridge Polar Bear Foundation Fund #3451" filled out in the notation area.
Above: an excerpt from the Feb. 2019 issue of "Dividends", published by Northridge Schools, featuring a presentation of Polar Bear grants at a Northridge School Board meeting.
Click the photo to download the full copy (story on page 2).