Four co-founders of the student-driven Re-Write It Project, Maya Jha, Sareena Shah, Ana Parikh, and Raina Koshal, are fighting for equality within public schools for impoverished children who cannot afford school supplies and other items that will help them succeed.
The Re-Write It Project makes essential learning materials such as books and supplies more accessible for students.
Jha explained, “We came up with the title because what we do is rewrite a story of certain supplies that bring a certain sense of euphoric, historical feeling but, sadly enough, become disposed of. The items go towards the trash, so we just recycle unused or unwanted items.”
Jha and her colleagues founded the Re-Write It Project in 2020 to close educational gaps so children can look forward to having the school supplies and books they need. The organization’s work so far has brought joy into many children’s lives, she noted.
“Our mission is to reduce educational inequity by collecting old and used supplies for ten donation centers,” Jha explained. “We refurbish them and give them to communities that can better utilize them, such as elementary schools, the Rohingya Cultural Center, the Erie Health Family Foundation, and Labor to Labor Literacy Project.”
Re-Write It has “four volunteer teams: the finance, volunteer, marketing, and supply teams,” Jha said. “Thirty volunteers are in the volunteer area whereas twenty group members are part of all four teams. We’re always searching for new assistants because it will help us bring in more supplies to local establishments quickly and more effectively. We have different structures in place. The volunteers are invited to attend an event about once a month, so they can tackle assignments together. It helps the workload become less difficult and manageable with volunteers present.”
Rewrite It Project members know firsthand about finding financial assistance to support their mission.
“We receive donations,” Jha said. “Annually, we have holiday fundraisers around December. We try to raise as much money for the charitable events as possible. We appreciate our donors because they are a huge part of the community, and they genuinely care for the public. We publicize the need for donations because that is the only way others will know what needs to be done to help the children, in addition to collecting the supplies we’ve already collected as well as possibly receiving new materials, also.”