In its 20th year, D.E.S.K. of San Angelo donated a landmark amount of $77,000, the largest amount in program history, in support of San Angelo ISD students and families in need of school supplies. D.E.S.K., which stands for Donate Educational Supplies to Kids, presented SAISD schools with funds for the 2023-2024 school year in August. The funds were allocated out to each SAISD campus based on need for school supply purchase last month.
“This has been a banner year for D.E.S.K.!” said Vicki Loso, D.E.S.K. Vice President. “This year is our largest amount ever to donate to help our students in the SAISD - $77,000 along with over 100 boxes and bags of supplies.”
The D.E.S.K. organization works year round, alongside community partners, in pursuit of its mission “To ensure all SAISD students have the necessary school supplies to facilitate learning.” Community partners who have joined D.E.S.K. in its mission include: McDonald's, 1st Community Federal Credit Union, Dr. Pepper, Sam's Club, KLST, San Angelo Standard-Times and Townsquare Media
“The spirit of giving is alive and well in our community thanks to the continued efforts of our local leaders and business partners!” said Dr. Carl Dethloff, SAISD Superintendent. “Eric Wilson and Vicki Loso, along with their respective organizations, continue to impact so many students in our community and school system through their philanthropy. We are blessed to have the financial support of so many businesses to ensure that every SAISD student has school supplies.”
The organization hosts school supply drives in the fall and fundraisers throughout the year including a golf tournament; online silent auction; participation in San Angelo Gives, the 24-hour, online giving event in May; and a Christmas decoration sale. “Along with these events we also apply for grants with local foundations and receive donations from local organizations, churches and people who also feel supporting our local students in this way is critical to helping provide them with a great education,” Ms. Loso said.
D.E.S.K. was founded in 2004 by local resident and entrepreneur Eric Wilson, who identified an unmet need to assist SAISD students in obtaining school supplies. Mr. Wilson formed a board of concerned Concho Valley community members who set out to raise funds to meet this need.
“D.E.S.K. has grown from an idea that Eric Wilson, local McDonald’s owner, had back in 2004 to the great impact we have on students, their parents, teachers and others who step in to buy supplies for local students,” Ms. Loso said. “He approached 1st Community Federal Credit Union to be a partner and from there it has just become a part of our everyday lives. We are either planning or preparing for the next event, writing grants, gathering donations, or just simply sharing the mission of D.E.S.K. with others in town.”
Now in its 20th year, the organization has raised more than $1 million since 2004 for the purpose of helping those in the school district who are unable to purchase supplies for the school year. SAISD principals and staff acknowledge the meaningful contribution by D.E.S.K. for their schools, and have shared stories about how the organization helps families in need while also supporting teachers who might otherwise feel compelled to provide those supplies themselves.
“This year D.E.S.K. is celebrating our 20th year of providing school supplies for students in the SAISD, kindergarten thru 12th grade, who are not able to purchase supplies with their own means,” Ms. Loso said. “All of us who are involved with D.E.S.K. are so excited to reach the $1 million dollar milestone along with donations of thousands of boxes and bags of supplies over the years.”