Ankeny Community School District’s community engagement department supports Project Fresh Start, a program piloted by Volunteer Dave Kissinger in 2004. After five years as a teacher and 29 years as a counselor at Ankeny Schools, Kissinger retired and proposed an idea to disperse school supplies to Ankeny students who could not afford them. His plan went through the Education Task Force, a group made up of educators and members from the Ankeny Chamber of Commerce. The group accepted the proposal and began work on a program called Days of Giving to give school supplies away for the 2005-2006 school year.
In its first year, Days of Giving distributed 170 backpacks filled with school supplies. This year, volunteers came together to distribute 653 backpacks in four hours to Ankeny’s kids. The program was so successful that there are many backpacks and supplies leftover that will likely be distributed throughout the year or carried over to next year’s supply giveaway.
Days of Giving sparked a system of charitable services called Project Fresh Start, all originally organized by Kissinger. The most recent of Kissinger’s projects, in partnership with former school board member George Tracy, is Fresh Start for Success. The program launched Friday, September 7 of this year. Students with a job or desire to obtain a job can now apply to receive a voucher to buy the clothing they need to pursue their goals.
“What we want to do is give them a fresh start,” Kissinger said. “These kids are great kids. They just have some need.”
Ankeny Community Schools is unified in its commitment, passion, and vision so every learner is prepared to achieve a lifetime of personal success.
Ankeny Community School District does not discriminate based on race, color, creed, religion, national origin, sex, gender identity, age, disability, marital status, sexual orientation, physical attributes, physical or mental ability or disability, ancestry, political party preference, military affiliation, socioeconomic status, or familial status. Inquiries or grievances may be directed to Kenneth Morris, Jr., Equity Director, 306 SW School Street, P.O. Box 189, Ankeny, IA, 50021-0189, (515) 965-9600, firstname.lastname@example.org; or the Iowa Civil Rights Commission, Grimes State Office Building, Des Moines, IA, 50319-0201, (515) 281-4121; or the U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights, 500 West Madison Street, Suite 1475, Chicago, IL 60661
NOTICE: THE ANKENY COMMUNITY SCHOOL DISTRICT COMPLIES WITH THE AMERICANS WITH DISABILITIES ACT (ADA), IOWA CIVIL RIGHTS ACT (ICRA), AND SECTION 504 OF THE REHABILITATION ACT IN ENSURING PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES HAVE AN OPPORTUNITY EQUAL TO THAT OF THEIR NONDISABLED PEERS TO PARTICIPATE IN THE DISTRICT’S PROGRAMS, BENEFITS, AND SERVICES, INCLUDING THOSE DELIVERED THROUGH ELECTRONIC AND INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY. FOR REQUESTS OR INQUIRIES REGARDING ACCESS TO THE DISTRICT’S WEBPAGE OR ANOTHER ELECTRONIC RESOURCE, PLEASE CONTACT THE DISTRICT’S COMMUNICATIONS MANAGER, SAMANTHA AUKES AT 515-289-3950 OR SAMANTHA.AUKES@ANKENYSCHOOLS.ORG. INFORMATION ON HOW TO REACH THE DISTRICT’S SECTION 504/EQUITY COORDINATOR AND APPLICABLE GRIEVANCE PROCEDURES ARE AVAILABLE HERE.