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Our Model

Care to Learn empowers school staff and faculty to respond immediately, meeting students’ needs anonymously. They are taught how to identify students who need help and how to effectively take action, which helps keep administrative costs low.

A group of 4 elementary school children, standing outside in front of a bush. They are smiling and wearing backpacks.

Identify

students with unmet needs and supplement current services.

Students in need aren't always easy to spot. Care to Learn works with our schools to empower everyone (teachers, nurses, bus drivers, custodians, counselors, and principals) to know what to look for and what steps to take. Anyone in a school district can have the power to meet a child’s need, and we’re here to help.

Student walking towards the entrance of the school building with backpacks highly visible.

Develop

a sustainable fundraising strategy by creating a flexible fund.

Once a need is identified, we work with Chapters to build community awareness, and provide resources and support. With support from Care to Learn, individual Chapters are empowered to grow and sustain support from the ground up in their own communities.

One student wearing glasses smiling next to a red brick wall.

Respond

immediately while protecting student confidentiality.

Care to Learn Chapters are designed to meet student needs on the spot. That means no extra approval needed, and no red tape or special requirements. We want to help students as quickly as possible—above or below the Missouri poverty line—and preserve their dignity, too.

Our Pillars

Each year, almost a million kids go to school in the state of Missouri. While most families are able to stock up on essential health, hunger, and hygiene items, some will have a much harder time making ends meet. When basic needs go unmet, students can’t focus on learning. That’s why Care to Learn focuses our efforts in these three areas:

Health

Of the 900,000+ students who attend Missouri public schools, one in five live below the Missouri poverty line. These students often have unmet medical, dental, and mental health concerns that make learning more challenging.

Hunger

One in six kids is hungry each day and more than 200,000 children in Missouri live with food insecurity. Kids need healthy meals so they can stay energized, alert, and ready to conquer their day.

Hygiene

Under-resourced students are four times more likely to miss school. Students who have their clothing and hygiene needs covered feel included, recharged, and ready to take on the classroom.

Get Involved

Our mission is to provide immediate funding to meet emergent needs in the areas of health, hunger, and hygiene so every student can be successful in school.

Real students. Real stories.

Making a difference every day—one student at a time. Since 2008, we’ve helped to meet 2 million needs through Care to Learn Chapters providing resources in education across the state. That’s more than just a number. Each need represents a unique individual story.

Items like a coat, a meal, or a toothbrush have the ability to drastically impact a child's life. Watch and find out why meeting these needs matters. To lear...

Building confidence, trust, and relationships

Items like a coat, a meal, or a toothbrush have the ability to drastically impact a child's life. See the real impact that Care to Learn can make.

A group of elementary school age children with one girl in the foreground smiling.

Our Impact

Support Our Mission

You can help kids in your community get the resources in education they need to have a successful school year. Every gift can make a difference—the average cost to meet a student’s health, hunger, or hygiene needs is less than $10. See how you can help.

  1. Ways to Give

Stay Up to Date

Male high school graduate smiling while popping a confetti cannon

Helping Jack* Join Graduation

May 22

Earlier this year Jack was a high school student in a local Missouri school district without a safe place to sleep. Now, he’s officially a graduate and on to a bigger and brighter future, thanks to the help of a caring school leader named Maggie.*

Group of Educators holding green envelopes smiling

Introducing The Secret Hero Project

March 27

$200 means a lot — especially if you are a middle or high school student. That's why Care to Learn wanted to find a special way for Springfield Public Schools staff to give this money to 150 students who needed a little extra boost.

A group of Springfield Public Schools teachers and educators smile and wave at the camera

Shop With A Hero Highlights

February 15

An electric toothbrush. Sparkly pink shoes. Camo pants. A brand new pillow. These are just some of the purchases made on February 3, at Care to Learn’s 9th Annual Shop with a Hero event. Take a peek at some of the other key highlights from one of our favorite days of the year.

Boy in salmon pink shirt holds hygiene products including shampoo, conditioner and deodorant.

Love in Action

February 7

Deodorant may not seem like much; but to one teen, it was everything. One intentional act of love brought him to tears.

three kids in winter coats walking and laughing

Warm for Winter

January 8

"It's mine to keep?" After receiving a winter gift, one student was in shock that it was now hers to call her very own.

Girl smiling with unicorn pjs and confetti

There's Something Magical About Unicorn Pajamas

December 7

Find out Care to Learn helped share a little sparkle with one little girl who wanted to fit in with her classmates.

Two girls wearing hats, coats and mittens sitting on the ground

Chapters Help Students Take On Fall & Winter

October 19

In Missouri, seasons can change in a snap, but Care to Learn Chapters are ready to go. They’re prepping for colder weather so students have what they need, no matter the time of year.

Krystal Simon and Chance Wistrom on stage Care to Learn School Soiree

Why 2023 School Soirée Gets An A+

September 23

It's really YOU that made the grade. We can't stop thinking about how much fun it was to gather together to support a cause that's close to our hearts.

Care to Learn staff with gold 3 million balloons

Care to Learn Celebrates Meeting 3 Million Needs

September 18

Care to Learn was founded in 2008 to help every child be successful in school. Now, 15 years later, Care to Learn is celebrating meeting over 3 million health, hunger, and hygiene needs.

Close up view of students below the Missouri poverty line standing against a brick wall showing their shoes, backpacks and other resources in education

Make A Gift

Show you care by helping students to learn. You can support the Care to Learn mission and help kids all across the state be successful in school.

Donate Now