Think Together Switches from Fundraiser to Fun-Maker 

In lieu of hosting an annual fundraiser gala, Think Together gave donors the hands-on opportunity to engage with Think Together’s mission to change the odds for kids. Over a two-day event, volunteers assembled kits that will directly support Think Summer curriculum, which will allow students to design, engineer solutions, learn from one another and bring their ideas to life.    

On April 19 and April 20, 100 volunteers from organizations such as TopGolf, National Charity League, State Farm, Cox, Deloitte, Pacific Life, Poppy Bank, Soroptomists of Orange, West Coast Dental, Farmers Merchant Bank, University Synagogue, and Marsh & McLennan Insurance assembled summer learning enrichment kits with supplies for activities in STEAM, English language arts, physical education and visual arts.   

One lesson students will learn over the summer is “For Your Amusement.” In this lesson, students will create a prototype for an innovative carnival ride or game as part of a larger themed amusement park collaboratively designed by their program group. 

“This event format was exciting to see come to life. Through this event, our donors and volunteers get to assemble supplies that will be directly used in classrooms across the state to engage student minds over the summer break,” shared Dianne Chaves, Think Together’s Senior Director of Programs & Innovations.  

During the summer, research suggests that students in underserved communities can lose up to 3 months of progress from the previous academic year compared to their wealthier peers. But summer can also be a time to help level the playing field through high-quality, summer learning programs that produce measurable benefits in math, reading and social and emotional learning.  

“We see time and time again the significant benefits of summer learning programs for students,” says Randy Barth, Think Together’s Founder and CEO. “Too often, breaks are filled with kids spending extended time in front of screens and pulled out of routine which is not beneficial in the long-term for student success.” 

Starting as early as mid-May, Think Together will partner with school districts to run 4-6 week summer learning programs filled with enriching lessons, field trips and opportunities to keep connected to friends. Think Together’s approach combines fun with learning, giving students opportunities to learn new skills and stay sharp on others before school starts again in the fall.