RWA raises over $80K for activity bus, other needs

Asst. Athletic Director Paul Brigman, left, and Head of School Kristen Chaisson accept a $10,000 donation from Jimmy Ray Douglas.

WINNSBORO – Richard Winn held their annual Mix and Mingle and Auction events together this year and it paid off, bringing in approximately $46,000 from raffles, silent and live auctions.

The school also held a Fund-a-Need event with the hope of raising an additional $35,000 for a new athletic activity bus. RWA supporter Jimmy Ray Douglas kicked that event off with a $5,000 donation, then later challenged other donors by donating another $10,000, helping the school to raise a total of $40,300 for the bus, surpassing their goal.

The event was held on September 17 with about 300 people in attendance. It was the first year the Mix and Mingle and the Auction have been held jointly.

“We are very excited about the success of our Mix & Mingle/Auction event,” said Kristen Chaisson, Head of School. “We are especially grateful for the outpouring of love and donations to help us fund a new activity bus. Our amazing PTO and Auction Committee led the charge to make this event a success and the donatons are still trickling in,” Chaisson said.

She said the event was originally scheduled to be a fun social event that would benefit RWA with small auction items and ticket sales; however, Chaisson said the donations quickly and surprisingly took off beyond what had been hoped for.

Chaisson credited the PTO and its president Suzie Sharpe and the Auction Committee headed by Amy Stuck for keeping the donations flowing.

The bus donations, led by Douglas’s total $15,000 donations were the big surprise.

School leaders realized in early August that their athletic bus might not make it through another school year. Arrangements to purchase a new bus quickly became a top priority.

Chaisson said the school has many other needs as well, including technology and building upgrades that the auction donations could be used for. The decisions on how to use the funds will be voted on during the school’s next board meeting.

“Our PTO and Auction Committees have worked really hard and their efforts resulted in immense support from our community. We express sincere appreciation for all the generous support from them and from our community,” said Janae McLean, Director of Finance for the school.

“The love, the energy and the commitment from the community to make our school better for our students is refreshing and exciting,” Chaisson said.

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