For the third year, the Cape Henlopen Educational Foundation’s partnership with local businesses is helping to stock the supply shelves of all the district’s teachers.
CHEF President Rick Grier-Reynolds said the Caravan of Caring school supply drive supports teachers who spend their own money each year to buy materials for students who come to school without paper, notebooks, pencils and other necessary supplies.
The caravan stopped by all Cape schools on Sept. 11 to deliver bins of supplies to school administrators to distribute to teachers. Grier-Reynolds urged school principals to contact CHEF throughout the year if stockpiled supplies start to run low. Remote students will also be provided with materials via meal pickup locations, he said.
Grier-Reynolds said CHEF is a 501c3 nonprofit organization that funds teacher grants for unbudgeted classroom projects, support for homeless and limited-income students, STEM initiatives, performing arts education and training, and programs to promote diversity and inclusion. CHEF awarded $48,000 in grants last year, he said.
Supplies were donated by community members and dropped off at local businesses. Grier-Reynolds said program sponsors included St. Edmond’s Catholic Church; Schell Brothers; Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices; Seashore Striders; Johnson Orthodontics; Lefty’s Alley & Eats; Po’ Boys Creole Restaurant; Staples; Ignite Fitness Kickboxing; AAA Storage; and several homeowner associations, including Ladies of Pilottown Reserve, Redding Ridge and Sea Chase.
For more information, go to chef-cape.org.
Noonan has worked in the children and family space in varying capacities for more than 15 years. Prior to moving to Delaware, she worked in New York City for the Nickelodeon Kids & Family networks at MTV, where she was a part of digital production and managed online video for Nick.com, Nick@Nite, Teennick and Spongebob.com. There, she developed a keen interest in librarianship and started working toward her master’s degree in library and information science at Syracuse University’s iSchool, which she completed in 2012.
In June 2017, Noonan took the position of children’s librarian at Lewes Public Library. She has worked since then to broaden its collection and programming for children from newborn to age 12, and to increase outreach in the community, including strengthening the library’s partnership with the Cape Henlopen School District.
“Jen has a passion for making sure young people have access to information and books, and has spearheaded Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library and the Keep Cape Reading initiative in the Cape Henlopen School District,” said CHEF President Rick Grier-Reynolds. “Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library expanded to a five-district pilot by the state of Delaware in January 2020. Keep Cape Reading delivered more than 800 brand-new books to Cape students during the coronavirus pandemic at school meal distribution, and has begun installing bookshelves at local food pantries where children can select books to take home for keeps when they visit with their families.”
CHEF has been a nonprofit strategic partner of the Cape Henlopen School District since 2007. For the latest information about how CHEF is providing Cape students in kindergarten through 12th grade with the tools they need to excel in school and life, go to chef-cape.org.
CHEF President Rick Grier-Reynolds recently appeared on Rehoboth Daybreak Morning Show (99.1 FM) to discuss the Cape Henlopen Educational Foundation. Listen to the interview here.