Serving Monroe, Owen, and Greene Counties

Kindergarten Countdown 2015

The City of Bloomington Fire Department (BFD) is partnering with United Way of Monroe County and IU Health for their first annual Kindergarten Countdown Supply Drive during the month of June.

As part of the Kindergarten Countdown program, backpacks are provided with all the supplies each child will need to succeed during this crucial learning time in their life. School supply lists are long and the costs can really add up, especially for families who are already struggling to make ends meet. This is where you come in!

The BFD will hold supply drives at all five fire stations. The goal is to fill 25 backpacks for children during the entire month of June. "The City of Bloomington Fire Department is excited to partner with United Way of Monroe County by providing our fire stations as drop off points for the Kindergarten Supply Drive,” said Fire Chief Todd Easton. “Hopefully by opening the doors to the five City of Bloomington fire stations, this will provide easy access for the citizens of Monroe County to participate in this program."

The backpacks will have all of the supplies each child will need to succeed during this crucial learning time in their life.  

“Leading this supply drive is one more way Bloomington Firefighters show how committed they are to our community. Not only do they keep us safer through their daily work, but they also invest in making sure new Kindergartners have the tools for success in school and beyond,” said Barry Lessow, United Way of Monroe County Executive Director. “Many young children in our community will benefit from our partnership with the Bloomington Fire Department and these professional firefighters.”

This year marks the fifth year in Monroe County for Kindergarten Countdown, which is a free or low-cost summer camp opportunity aimed at helping at-risk kids with no preschool experience to be ready to learn in their first year of school. United Way’s goal is to enroll 25 students in the program, which will introduce literacy, science and math as well as valuable social interaction and classroom behavior skills that are crucial to being a part of a formal classroom.

Ashley Schoolman, United Way of Monroe County Community Initiatives Assistant Director commented, “Kindergarten Countdown is a great opportunity for young students to get ready to succeed in their first year of school. We are very excited about the benefits that this new partnership with the Bloomington Fire Department will bring! Their supply drive efforts will make sure that more kids start school with both the skills and the supplies they need to be successful.”

Kindergarten Countdown Camp (KCC) starts on June 3 and ends on July 16. United Way has provided Kindergarten Countdown scholarships for dozens of low-income children for the past four years.

Anyone may drop off supplies at the following fire stations:

Station 1:  300 E. 4th Street
Station 2:  209 S. Fairfield Drive
Station 3:  900 N. Woodlawn Avenue
Station 4:  2201 E. 3rd Street
Station 5:  1987 S. Henderson Street

For more information about supplies needed, download this flyer. For more information about Kindergarten Countdown, click here. For more information regarding drop off locations, contact the Bloomington Fire Department at (812) 349-9763.
Read the Herald-Times coverage here.

United Way would also like to thank German American employees for helping to fill backpacks for Kindergarten Countdown students.

Do you want to strengthen education in our community?

Please consider donating to the United Way Education Priority Fund. This fund helps children achieve their potential through cradle-to-career initiatives that ensure kids enter kindergarten ready to learn and graduate high school ready to earn success in college or career.

Want to learn more about additional Education initiatives or the other building blocks for a good life - Earnings and Essentials?


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  • Bank On Bloomington