The Miami Beach Chamber of Commerce Education Foundation is honored to partner with Aetna on this initiative which allowed us to harness our very active community to help meet the need for healthcare in the local schools. The tremendous response from our community and business leaders supported us in our victory and we thank them all. It was a true grassroots community effort and we thank Aetna on behalf of our students who will now receive the health care they deserve, said Alan Lips, Chairman of the Board, Miami Beach Chamber of Commerce.
Who We Are:
The purpose of the Miami Beach Chamber of Commerce’s Education Foundation is to bring together the strengths and resources of the community to support the needs of public education in Miami Beach. To stimulate greater governmental and public awareness and appreciation of the importance of public education in Miami Beach; to encourage greater and more efficient use of governmental and private resources for the development and support of public education in Miami Beach; to encourage and support public education in Miami Beach; to create and support educational opportunities for residents of Miami Beach. The Miami Beach Chamber Education Foundation is a 501C3.
What We Do:
Current components provided by the Miami Beach Chamber’s Education Foundation include a variety of donations for scholarship funds supported by events hosted throughout the year as well as programming to help educate the future leaders of the community. Proceeds from community business leaders who support the Chamber’s Annual Miami Beach Golf Classic and the Annual Miami Beach Chamber Dinner Gala & Silent Auction help fund programming costs for the International Baccalaureate (IB) Programs available at all the public schools in the City of Miami Beach, a unique school system in itself as there is a feeder pattern program with the five public schools on Miami Beach feeding into one public high school. The IB Program helps develop the intellectual, personal, emotional, and social skills of students from age 3 to 19 to live, learn, and work in a rapidly globalizing world. In addition to this program, the Education Foundation is able to provide scholarships at the end of each school year to graduating seniors at Miami Beach Senior High School. There is an application process and a committee of community leaders who choose the top winners. These winners are announced at an annual ceremony and scholarships are provided directly to the college of choice for the winning students. Throughout the past year, between five and ten scholarships are given out each year.
A new program developed to benefit the Miami Beach Education Foundation is a Real Money Business Camp which is hosted in partnership with City National Bank. The Real Money Business Camp features 9 category specific business stations to help graduating seniors learn about the real world and how to make, spend, and save money.. From opening a check book to paying for their education, buying their first car and home, finding the right insurance policy, choosing an entertainment plan, and ultimately saving to make sure they balance their family budget. An initiative of the Miami Beach Chamber of Commerce, the Real Money Business Camp was created to support the Chamber’s Education Foundation and help students prosper as they move on to college. The first event was held with 70 students, 35 from Miami Beach Senior High School Honors Statistics Class and 35 from Miami Northwestern High School. City National Bank executives visited the classrooms for five days prior to the event in order to prepare the students for the final day at the Real Money Business Camp hosted at Jungle Island. Ten station sponsors helped facilitate the real money simulation and provided donations for an essay contest, in which three students will be chosen to receive scholarship funds. The goal of this program is to host the simulation twice a year and grow the event to be able to host a larger group of students each time.
Since the 2001 establishment of the foundation, the Miami Beach Chamber has hosted a luncheon each year to honor the Miami Beach “Teacher of the Year” with the partnership and support of Florida Power & Light and a classroom donation provided by Office Depot.
Over $75,000 in programming and scholarship support has been provided in total and it is the mission of the Miami Beach Chamber to continue the legacy and grow community support of our future leaders for years to come.
In order to promote access to health care for all, the Miami Beach Chamber’s Education Foundation is proud to support the efforts to find nurses for three public elementary schools who currently have no access to any type of health care. If someone were to get sick, there is no one on staff that is knowledgeable in the medical world to save a child's life if need be.
The City of Miami Beach receives Title 1 federal funding which allows the school districts to provide services to all schools where at least 75% of students receive free or reduces lunch meals. For any of the nine public schools in the City of Miami Beach feeder pattern to be eligible for Title 1 Federal funds, 40% of students must be from low-income families. Five of our schools are eligible for Title 1 funding showcasing the needs in the community and reemphasizing the need for more access to health care in these students lives.
The funding we would receive from Aetna Voices of Health program would assist to begin the funding to support the nurses in the public schools in the City of Miami Beach and help us fight to support the health system for our future leaders of this community.