Famous Tate donates laundry equipment to local school

By Andy Kriege, YSN

BrandSource member Famous Tate recently partnered with a local charity in the Tampa area to donate a GE Profile Ultra Combo (combination washer dryer) to Westshore Elementary School as part of a special renovation project designed to benefit students. 

Related: Christmas Came Early in Tampa

That local charity is a foundation called Dorothy Day Ministry, named in honor of Dorothy Day, co-founder of the Catholic Worker Movement, whose goal is to build a society in which “it’s easier for people to be good.”  The organization committed resources to helping the grade school create a “Transformation Room” for teachers and students, which is where the new Ultra Combo unit now sits.

“It was meant as a reward destination room for kids to help keep them motivated,” said Famous Tate principal Jason Horst. “It is now equipped with state-of-the-art furniture for collaboration and movement, all funded by local groups. A couple of teachers from the school had created the vision for this room, and the Dorothy Day organization helped make it a reality.

“We had the easy part in helping them complete a part of this room by donating the washer/dryer,” Horst said.

One of the main issues for students at Westshore is absenteeism, and one of the main drivers of absenteeism, as identified by the group, is the stigma of not having clean clothes to wear to school. The donation of the washer/dryer unit now allows them to launder their clothing during the school day and have clean apparel for the next day.

Related:  Whirlpool Ensures Clean Clothes for Schoolkids

Having onsite laundry means that participating kids no longer need be embarrassed about going to class. Currently, there are about 20 students who take daily advantage of the new laundry setup in the Transformation Room.

Westshore Elementary School Principal Julie Florin, with Famous Tate’s GE Profile combo unit.

How Absenteeism Affects Learning

Statistics underscore the importance of answering the bell and showing up to school every day. 

Being absent increases the risk of dropping out. To put that in perspective:

•  An estimated 16 million students across the country are impacted by chronic absenteeism. 

•  75% of U.S. elementary schools have reported an increase in chronic absenteeism since 2019.

•  For each year that a student is chronically absent, their odds of dropping out of school nearly doubles. 

Other BrandSource Members Have Stepped Up

Last year YSN profiled BrandSource member Amundson Appliance, which is also helping kids without fresh clothing for school. The dealer initiated a community service program called “Clean Clothes for Kids” in the five Wisconsin communities it serves. The program donates laundry pairs directly to needy families in the community. 

See: Amundson’s Appliance Campaigns for Kids

As owner Lucas Amundson explained, “Every school has a family or several families where household money is extremely tight. If a washer or dryer goes out or parents can’t afford the laundromat, the kids find themselves having to go to school with the same dirty clothes. Often these kids are teased and bullied.”

YSN gives a tip of the cap to BrandSource members like Famous Tate and Amundson Appliance who see a need in the community and take it upon themselves to be part of the solution.

YSN publisher AVB BrandSource is the nation’s largest merchandising and marketing co-op for independent appliance, mattress, furniture and CE dealers.

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