About the Fund
Poverty, Homeless Children & Youth
Despite increased employment in our community, poverty and homelessness have continued to rise in Eau Claire since 2008. Each year, the Eau Claire Area School District serves nearly 11,000 students, and 48% are living at or below the poverty level (per school poverty rate 26% - 81%). Still more hover slightly above the poverty level and struggle to make ends meet.
These percentages represent nearly 5,000 children and young adults who are living at or below the poverty level, Many families are making choices about food vs. paying the heating bill. Often these families are unable to afford basic necessities that support a happy healthy student.
Of those more than 300 children and youth are living in a homeless situation. Homeless situations include one family living with another, living in a motel, an emergency or transitional shelter, living in a car, at a campground or in any other place not intended for an overnight dwelling.
The ECASD Homeless Children and Youth Program serves hundreds of homeless students across the district each year. Coordinator Danielle Claesges assists families to eliminate the barriers homelessness poses for their children. A most pressing need is transportation from their shelter to a consistent school while their families work to find stable housing.
The Homeless Children and Youth Fund for Today was established to secure funding district-wide for children, students and families within ECASD living in a homeless situation.
It supports various student and family needs, from transportation to winter gear to school supplies.
A gift to this fund will help ensure that students' basic needs are met so they can focus on their educations.