March 14, 2024

Warming Hearts and Spreading Cheer: How Kiddie Academy Locations are Giving Back

Four Kiddie Academy locations, three in St. Louis and another in Texas, are demonstrating the true spirit of community through inspiring philanthropic initiatives. These Academies aren’t just nurturing young minds; they’re nurturing young hearts as well, teaching valuable lessons about empathy, responsibility, and the joy of giving back.

From Coats to Comfort: “Warner’s Warm-Up” at St. Louis-Area Academies

Three Kiddie Academy locations in the St. Louis area—Kiddie Academy of Des Peres, Kiddie Academy of Chesterfield, and Kiddie Academy of O’Fallon—revived their tradition of hosting a “Warner’s Warm-Up” campaign, collecting over 200 coats to ensure children in their community stay warm throughout the winter. Warner’s Warm-Up was started by former St. Louis Rams quarterback Kurt Warner when he was in St. Louis and it hasn’t let up since he left.

By integrating the drive into the Character Essentials theme “We Are Thankful,” the Academies encouraged children to reflect on their own blessings and understand the needs of others. Students learned about gratitude, created “I am thankful for” drawings, and participated in discussions about philanthropy. The entire Academy, from leadership to educators and staff, embraced the initiative, fostering a sense of ownership and community spirit. Parents readily participated, recognizing the importance of instilling compassion and social responsibility in their children. The Academies believe that events like these go beyond customer service; they establish them as active and caring members of the community, dedicated to making a positive impact.

“To be present in the community in a positive and giving way further solidifies that while educating young children is our business, we believe in opportunities that go beyond our own customer base and makes us relevant in the community,” shared Laura Eads, operating partner of the three Academies. “Giving back is part of the calling to contribute.”

Building Bridges with Texas Children’s Hospital: Trunk or Treat with a Purpose at Kiddie Academy in Texas

Driven by a personal connection to Texas Children’s Hospital, Kiddie Academy of Harmony partnered with this renowned institution for their annual fall fundraiser. This year, the focus was on nephrology, highlighting the hospital’s expertise in this area and raising awareness about the challenges faced by children with kidney disorders. The Academy incorporated the theme seamlessly into classroom lessons, utilizing story time and discussions about gratitude to prepare children for the event. Staff meetings served as platforms for explaining the cause and fostering a shared sense of purpose. The effort raised $1,000 and provided ample opportunity to weave in valuable life lessons; it was about building empathy, understanding the value of giving back, and celebrating the joy of community. This commitment to philanthropy extended beyond the immediate Academy family, with existing and former families readily participating. The Academy emphasizes that these events strengthen bonds, create dialogue, and build a stronger sense of belonging within the community.

“Philanthropy and social responsibility are near and dear to us,” shared owner Rakesh Patel. “Moreover, we believe that charity and humility are innate in all children, and we work to provide them with opportunities to do good.”

These Kiddie Academy locations serve as inspiring examples of how the Kiddie Academy experience goes beyond academics to nurture children’s social and emotional development. By integrating philanthropy into their day-to-day and organizing meaningful community events, these Academies are laying the foundation for future generations of compassionate and responsible citizens. Their stories remind us that giving back doesn’t just warm hearts; it builds stronger communities and creates a brighter future for all.

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