Rocketship Education: Taking on Tragedy

Feeling secure is something most people take for granted. Many people are not worried about their next meal or if they’ll have a place to live next week. However, this is a common fear among many low-income families. This feeling of fear is only exacerbated when natural disasters reel their ugly head. In addition to the normal loss and devastation faced by all the victims of these events, low income populations face the fear of lasting instability. When low-income families lose their homes and their personal effects it can take them years to recover. This was the case for families in San Jose when a river flooded destroying thousands of homes.

Among the victims were students from a local branch of Rocketship Education. This school is not only comprehensive in its educational style but in its response to struggling families. The relief efforts began informally with staff members and teachers offering whatever they could to needy families. The faculty rained warm meals and new clothes down on the victims however the struggles were far from over. In fact, after the flood waters receded the real problems began to show. Many student’s families were living paycheck to paycheck. In addition, a lot of the housing lost to the flood was the only rent controlled housing available in the area. This left struggling families in an impossible situation that threatened homelessness.

Ever dedicated to the stability and success of students and their families this was not something Rocketship Education could allow. The school reached out to Catholic charities in the area and together they were able to raise over $60,000. This money was set to work quickly to provide relief. Rocketship Education used these funds to help families replace basic essentials as well as funding security deposits on new housing or even coving deductibles on insurance. Through their efforts, they were able to help families recover significantly faster than they would have been able to otherwise.

Rocketship Education is a nonprofit charter school program that specializes in underserved communities. They are dedicated to helping students overcome the achievement gap and realize their potential. Founded in 2006 they manage over 20 schools. These schools have been recognized as some of the best available among disadvantaged communities.