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Forward Together Grant Program

Forward Together

2019 Forward Together Award

At WEA Trust, we recognize that some of the best ideas in Wisconsin’s schools go unnoticed and unfunded. That’s why we’re giving three $3,000 grants to support school projects. Your innovation deserves celebration. 

What’s your vision or passion project? Tell us how you will drive it forward for your chance to win. 

Entry for the 2019 Forward Together Award will open January 1, 2019 and run through January 31, 2019.

Congratulations to the 2018 Forward Together Award Winners!

WEA Trust hosted the 5th annual Forward Together Award this past January. More than 100 school districts in Wisconsin submitted a project to fund their cutting-edge ideas. Thanks to everyone who applied, your motivation and dedication is inspiring.

This year's winners included: Rachel Tambornino of Mauston School District, Mary Donaldson of Algoma School District and Judy Brown of Coleman School District to fund their inspirational school projects.

Mauston School District

Tambornino will use the grant to help make their food and clothing pantry feel more store-like for their student guests, allowing for the pantry to grow and expand. Things like shelves, clothing racks and hangers will all be purchased to make the market a true shopping experience.

“Living in a high poverty area, we see a lot of our students going without basic necessities,” wrote Tambornino in their proposal. “This year, we have tried to alleviate some of the financial pressures that families face by opening a food and clothing pantry for our students.”

Tambornino expanded, “While we are helping some students address some needs, there are more students who are uncomfortable getting help. It is our hope to be able to market this as a true shopping experience (while remaining free) so that students won’t have to feel the stigma of being labeled “poor”.”


Algoma School District

Mary Donaldson will use the Forward Together grant to fund a portion of the Algoma School District after school program, the Wolf Pack. On Friday’s, a backpack meal is sent home with each student for the weekend. It includes food that will now be accompanied by pack activities, such as books and games. The grant will help purchase backpacks, activity supplies and journals as well as funds to repair anything that gets damaged.

“This [Wolf Pack] program is truly unique—not your ordinary after school program,” wrote Donaldson. “Our Wolf Pack was created to improve academics but went beyond this need to serve children in every grade.”


School District of Coleman

The 2018 grant will help fund Judy Brown’s, “Worms Ate My Homework” project. The school-wide composting project will reduce the amount of food waste in the cafeteria as well as the amount of paper waste in the classroom by using composting worm habitats.

“The Worms Ate my Homework [project] is a far reaching, lifelong project,” wrote Brown. “Students will be able to apply the skills learned in the classroom and bring the skills into their homes to further the impact of waste reduction.”

Nelson will use the Forward Together Award to purchase resources to support a large motor skills area. With new materials like jumbo trikes, sensory mats and balance beams, students will increase the strength of their gross and fine motor skills while also encouraging students to be active.


Honorable Mentions

We'd like to give special recognition to the top 25 2018 Forward Together projects. Thank you for your vision, passion, and drive!

  • Amanda Reinke, Shawano School District

  • Cassie Frost, Stevens Point School District

  • Christina Reitzner, Freedom Area School District

  • Colleen Thompson, Mishicot School District

  • Craig Griffie, Brown Deer School District

  • David Venne, Racine School District

  • Eric Esweuin & Ana Thesing, Tomah School District

  • Jay Posick, Merton Community School District

  • Jessica Kelly, Fall Creek School District

  • Kathleen DeBoth, Wabeno School District

  • Kay Kuenzi-Stenerson, Oshkosh Area School District

  • Linzi Gronning, De Soto Area School District

  • Mary Byrns, Black River Falls School District

  • Matt Bright, Beloit Turner School District

  • Michelle Kirchman, Prairie du Chien School District

  • Nadia Johnson, Cadott School District

  • Paul Schwaller, Menominee Indian School District

  • Penny Goldman, Fox Point-Bayside School District

  • Rachel Harmeling, Lake Geneva Schools

  • Stacy Hofacker, Appleton Area School District

  • Stephanie Snyder Knutson, Oregon School District

  • Sue Johnson & Erin O'Halloran, West Allis West Milwaukee School District

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Keep In Touch

Fill out this form and we will notify you when we begin to accept applications for the 2019 Forward Together Award.