The school year is back in full swing, and for many students at King Kamehameha III Elementary School in Lahaina, it’s shaping up to be an even better year thanks to Sue DeLoria and Barb Potts of Keller Williams Realty Maui.
Just as they have in years past, Potts and Deloria will collect and distribute school supplies and other items in the coming months as volunteer coordinators for the Wishing Well… for Maui Students program.
Wishing Well… for Maui Students is a program of the Realtors Association of Maui Community Foundation (RAMCF), a 501(c)3 non-profit organization. Since 2007, the Wishing Well has donated countless goods, supplies, and services to public schools countywide. Run by volunteer Realtors Association of Maui (RAM) members and fueled by the generosity of the community, the program covers every public school on Maui, Molokai and Lanai, along with Ka Hale A Ke Ola Homeless Resource Centers, a nonprofit that shelters students in different grade levels at its Wailuku and Lahaina facilities.
Each school has a volunteer coordinator (in some cases, more than one) who collects and distributes donated school supplies—pencils, calculators, rubber slippers, and everything in between—throughout the year to teachers, school personnel, parents and grandparents. The RAM member coordinators include Deloria, Potts, Malia Ashlock, Traci Bean, Michelle Bosque, Linda Briske, Michele Crozier, Kim Delmore, Penni Egger, Gloria Ezera, Mary Fabbio, Amy Johnson, Jill Kaiser, Paula Kobayashi, Jeannie Kong-Evarts, Rosalind Link, Melissa Montgomery, Kris Musto, Darryl and Jane Ng, Suni Novotny, Kay Okamoto, Ricardo Ralha, Anna Revilla, Sharon Robinson, Melissa Salvador, Sarah Sorenson and Sharon Viger.
As the coordinators for King Kamehameha III Elementary School, DeLoria and Potts work together to fulfill teachers’ wish lists and ensure every student has the tools he or she needs to succeed in the classroom. “We work all year-round to try to assess school needs and satisfy them where we can,” Potts explained. “We have provided much more than just school supplies, including printers and other equipment that is needed.”
“It is so important to be able to fill in the gaps in what the teachers and kids actually need in their classrooms,” DeLoria said. “They can rely on donations throughout the year from the Wishing Well community. We can fulfill items requested in a relatively short time through contacts in the community and also help by redistributing items that someone wants to donate but maybe doesn’t have the contacts to do so.”
The greatest reward of being a volunteer coordinator, she said, “Is making a teacher’s day by delivering a piece of furniture, office equipment or tools that will make a difference to their classroom and the kids they teach.”
Potts agrees wholeheartedly. “It feels great to be able to satisfy a need for a teacher or a school that can make a difference and help them achieve their goals in the classroom,” she said. “Public schools have so many needs and the system can be very difficult for them to get things done.”
You can help DeLoria and Potts and their fellow Wishing Well coordinators continue to make a difference. In addition to making a cash donation, you can purchase wished-for items like backpacks, pencil boxes, half-inch, one-inch and one-and-a-half-inch view binders, 24-count crayon boxes, white glue, watercolor paint sets, dry eraser pens, No. 2 pencils, 3-by-5-ruled index cards, primary journals, composition notebooks, spiral notebooks, art supplies and construction paper. Many office items can be used in a classroom, so if you own a business and need to offload any office supplies or furniture, contact the Wishing Well for a pickup service. For more information or to make a donation, visit www.ILoveMauiSchools.com or call Sarah Sorenson at 283-3969.
The Maui News – August 23. 2021