If you run a school, you will understand that it can be expensive to get all the equipment, including books, computers, stationery, etc. However, there are many local businesses that donate to schools, which you can take advantage of to receive multiple donations to enhance learning.
Finding donations for schools can be tough. That’s why the WorkAfterSchool blog has put together a list of local businesses that donate to schools, including supplies such as books, computers, and more. Some businesses even make donations for fundraising events and even give cash grants. If you need books or computers for your school, or if you’re planning a fundraising event, below are the top businesses that actively donate to local schools.
Local Businesses That Donate to Schools
If your school is looking to request Rocketbook donations, send an email to email@example.com. Rocketboom will get back to you as soon as possible.
Hawkers Asian Street Food
Hawkers Asian Street Food supports schools through in-kind donations and reduced menu pricing on fundraising events. You just have to complete the online application form on the application page. Hangers Asian Street Food will also require you to upload your Tax Exempt Form and 501c3 certificate to the application.
Once submitted, your school donation request is reviewed by a representative of Hawkers who will respond via email or by calling you directly. It can take up to 2 weeks to process your request.
Mead Education Foundation
The Mead Education Foundation is committed to improving the school experience in the local community. They are one of the local businesses that donate to schools operating under a Section of the Internal Revenue Service Code.
All donations to the Mead are tax-deductible. For employees of the Mead School District, there is an option to sign up for monthly donations directly from their paycheck. This initiative encourages employees to contribute a small amount, like $5 per month, which will help increase the number of grants awarded and inspire more donations from the business community.
Chronicle Books is a local business that donates to schools and has made supporting schools and education a top priority. The company has implemented a donor match program that matches employees’ donations and encourages them to volunteer in the community.
With this program, they have supported many organizations to promote literacy, education, and creativity. Some are the American Booksellers Foundation for Free Expression, the Northern California Children’s Booksellers Association, and the San Francisco Public Library.
Their annual Volunteer Day mobilizes employees to engage with local community partners, and their Give Books campaign donates books to children in need through First Book for every book pledged by the community. Chronicle Books also extends its philanthropic reach beyond San Francisco, with efforts like volunteering at the Hamilton Wood Type and Printing Museum and responding to natural disasters with fundraising bake sales.
BIC Corporate Foundation
Established in 2016, the BIC Corporate Foundation is deeply rooted in BIC’s long-standing tradition of providing high-quality writing instruments to schools. The foundation believes that creativity is a fundamental right and important for personal and societal development.
The vision is to create a world where everyone has equal access to education that not only empowers but also inspires youth. They have partnered with various organizations to contribute to the development of creative changemakers within society.
National Children’s Museum
Local schools in Washington, DC, have been receiving support from the National Children’s Museum, one of the local businesses that donate to schools.
This museum reviews donation requests monthly. Also, submit a request at least 60 days before your school’s event. The standard donation is four general admission tickets, valued at $63.80. There is a limit of one donation per organization per calendar year, and due to high demand, not all requests may be fulfilled.
In Chicago, the Adler Planetarium provides a valuable service to local schools through their Field Trip Days. On Tuesdays and Thursdays during the school year, school groups can visit the planetarium for an educational and fun experience.
For those unable to visit, you can get virtual learning experiences for different grade levels, including 5th to 8th grade and K to 4th grade. There are opportunities for school groups to have a self-guided museum experience during the summer and throughout the school year. Whether in person or virtually, the Adler Planetarium’s programs are designed to inspire and educate young minds, specifically local students.
Grimaldi’s Pizzeria is more than just one of the local businesses that donate to schools—they are also an active member of the community. They have a strong commitment to supporting local schools, and since 2020, they’ve donated over $20,000 in gift cards and food to schools through their “Grimaldi’s Pizzeria in the Community” program. Schools are one of their main areas of giving.
Grimaldi’s Pizzeria partnered with No Kid Hungry since 2012, raising over $1.1 million, with funds supporting nutrition programs like School Breakfast and Summer Meals. For local schools seeking donations, send your request through the online donation request form which is provided in this post. This local business tends to prioritize schools close to their pizzerias and base charitable giving on individual restaurant donation budgets. Submit your request at least 60 days before the event. They only approve one donation per organization each year.
Local schools have been getting support from Mimi’s Cafe. The restaurant has a fundraising program that helps schools and nonprofits raise money through special events.
The cafe is one of the local businesses that donate to schools. They do not support political groups, individuals, or for-profit organizations.
You can schedule a fundraiser by contacting the general manager of the local Mimi’s Cafe, decide on a date, and complete a fundraising agreement. After the corporate office approves the organization’s paperwork, the group receives a confirmation and a flyer to promote the event. Fundraisers are typically scheduled for dinner times but can be expanded to lunchtime upon request.
Chipotle does offer fundraising opportunities for local schools and other local businesses. Their commitment to local communities makes it easy to host fundraising events and generously give back 33% of event sales to the cause. For instance, a fundraiser with Warren Tech School helped students purchase parts to build race cars, and another with STEM Launch K-8 School enabled the replacement of old musical instruments and equipment.
These initiatives have had real impacts on students. Joseph Tally, a student at Warren Tech STEM, highlighted Chipotle’s support in buying essential parts for building a car. Hannah Ressler, a band director at STEM Launch, also acknowledges that the fundraisers have been important for the survival of their music program.
Pancheros Mexican Grill
The Pancheros Mexican Grill makes it a priority to partner with schools and other local businesses that donate to schools. It could be through fundraisers or special events. For Pancheros, supporting schools is a core part of their mission. Their “Burritos With Benefits” program focuses on K-12 schools, high school and college athletic organizations, clubs, fundraisers, and philanthropic events that promote nationwide causes.
Your school can request a donation, including an in-kind donation, a school fundraiser, or a partnership for a local or national charity event. Requests must be made by someone from the school or organization who can pick up the item from a Pancheros location. Make dye to submit your request at least 6 weeks before the required date.
Squisito Pizza and Pasta
Many local businesses that donate to schools, and Squisito Pizza and Pasta is one of these names. As a locally owned and operated business, Squisito is committed to giving back to the community. Through their fundraising program, they provide schools with food products at a discounted price, which helps these organizations raise money while also providing students with high-quality food.
If you are interested in obtaining a sponsorship, there is a Donation Request Form on the Squisito website that you can fill out for consideration. Applicants are usually notified of the outcome after 7-10 days of review.
Fat Witch Bakery
Fat Witch Bakery is well-known for its delicious baked goods. But what many people don’t know is that they are also committed to supporting schools. Fat Witch Bakery is making a difference in the lives of students and families in New York City. Being one of the local businesses that donate to schools, they help to create a brighter future for the next generation.
If you’re a school looking for contributions for an event, you can reach out to them via email at firstname.lastname@example.org. You should contact this local business 6-8 weeks before your event to consider your request for donations.
However, due to the volume of requests they receive, they may not be able to fulfill everyone’s request.
Schools are an important part of the fabric of the communities. Thankfully, Molly’s Cupcakes, one of the local businesses that donate to schools is aware of this status. Molly’s Cupcakes donates a portion of its profits to local schools so that students have the resources they need for their studies. In addition to financial support, Molly’s Cupcakes also offers educational opportunities, such as classroom visits and field trips. This local business also donates cupcakes to school functions and fundraisers.
To support children and youth, and also help them reach their full potential and achieve their dreams, the Panera Bread Foundation actively donates money to schools. They envision a world where opportunity and economic mobility are accessible and equitable for all.
Panera Bread’s efforts are particularly focused on middle and high school students. The programs are designed to help high schoolers succeed academically, graduate, and either move on to higher education or find long-term career paths. For middle schoolers, the emphasis is on strengthening learning skills, enhancing both hard and soft skills, and building healthy relationships through mentorship. They also support programs specializing in STEM or STEAM education.
How to Get Donations for a School
So, how do you get donations for a school?
1. Identify Potential Donors
Look for local businesses that have a history of donating to schools, such as the Mead Education Foundation, Chronicle Books, BIC Corporate Foundation, Grimaldi’s Pizzeria, National Children’s Museum, Mimi’s Cafe, Adler Planetarium, Pancheros Mexican Grill, Molly’s Cupcakes, Squisito Pizza and Pasta, Fat Witch Bakery, Chipotle, Hawkers Asian Street Food, and Panera Bread. There could be more in your local community, just look out for such philanthropic opportunities.
2. Understand the Program Requirements
Each business may have different programs and methods of support. For example, Mead Education Foundation offers tax-deductible donations and a payroll deduction program for employees.
Chronicle Books has a donor match program, while Grimaldi’s Pizzeria has a “Grimaldi’s Pizzeria in the Community” program.
3. Prepare Your Request
Tailor your request according to the business’s guidelines. Some, like Rocketbook, require an email request, while others, like Grimaldi’s Pizzeria, have an online donation request form.
4. Submit Requests in Advance
Many local businesses require you to submit your donation request well in advance of your event—often at least 60 days prior.
During the request submission, make sure to adhere to each business’s specific guidelines for donation requests to increase the chance of approval. For instance, the National Children’s Museum and Adler Planetarium have a one-donation-per-year policy. Remember, your school is likely not the only institution applying for the benefits, so don’t treat this casually.
5. Promote Partnership
When reaching out, highlight how a partnership can benefit both the school and the business, emphasizing community engagement and potential tax deductions.
Talk about organizing fundraising events. Some local businesses, such as Mimi’s Cafe and Pancheros Mexican Grill, support schools through fundraising events. Contact them to organize an event and agree on a date.
6. Acknowledge Their Support
After receiving donations, publicly thank the businesses for their support, which can encourage ongoing partnerships and inspire other businesses to donate to your school as well.
Read also: Companies That Donate Computers to Schools