Lake Garda School Students to Raise Funds to Help Their Peers

February 18, 2015 - Wanting to help their fellow Region 10 students, the Student Council at Lake Garda Elementary School in Burlington developed a creative fundraiser to benefit the Karen DuCotey Fund for Kids at Main Street Community Foundation.

The Karen DuCotey Fund for Kids was established in memory of Lake Garda School teacher Karen DuCotey after she passed away in 2010 at the young age of 31. The Fund provides grants to assist Region 10 students who may be in need of immediate assistance due to a particular life situation or unexpected financial hardship.

“The students wanted to raise awareness of the Karen DuCotey Fund for Kids and help their friends that need a helping hand,” stated Allison Czapla, a third-grade teacher and Student Council co-facilitator.

The Student Council, which consists of 13 students in third and fourth grades, raised $632.42, said Daria Avery, an ESL teacher and the Student Council’s other co-facilitator. The students presented the donation to Main Street Community Foundation at their monthly meeting on February 18, 2015.

For the fundraiser, the Student Council asked students and faculty to bring in spare change to contribute to a coin collection in honor of the Super Bowl. “Two buckets were set up in the school’s cafeteria, one for each team playing in the Super Bowl,” Ms. Czapla explained. “As students walked in, they cast their vote for who they thought would win the game by putting their change in the corresponding bucket. After the Lake Garda winner was announced, all the money was pooled and put toward the Fund in memory of an adored teacher.”

Karen DuCotey was an inspirational first and second-grade teacher at Lake Garda School as well as a former Burlington resident who attended Region 10 schools. Karen’s family and friends chose to honor her remarkable life by setting up an immediate response fund for Region 10 students. As a passionate teacher, education and children were an important part of Karen’s life and she would often personally help students in need.

The small grants awarded from the Fund assist students with needs that may be related to: Food, clothing or shelter; health and safety; extracurricular educational experiences; or opportunities for inclusion.