On the eve of its 10 year anniversary, the Groton Dunstable Education Foundation announces plans to streamline operations for the coming school year to create a more sustainable organization for the future.

Despite the generous financial support of local businesses and community members for its annual Octoberfest 5K Road Race and Trivia Night series, GDEF will take a hiatus from these fundraising events until such time as its volunteer resources allow.

Instead, it will refocus next year's fundraising efforts exclusively on its successful Annual Giving Campaign, a direct giving campaign that this year raised over $26,000 for enrichment grants, and on its Teaching Stars program for donations in honor of outstanding school personnel.

"GDEF has become an integral partner for the school district, providing over $360,000 in grants over the past 10 years to enrich the quality of education for our students, and we continue to accomplish a great deal through the efforts of a very small and dedicated group of individuals," said GDEF president Kerri Figueroa.

"However, the reality is that we need more volunteers, particularly in key director roles, to continue the work that we do," she said. "We invite the community to please join us in our efforts. Our hope is that the restructuring plans for the coming year will make the workload more manageable for all, while still offering many opportunities for new members to become involved.



In response to applicant feedback, GDEF has also revised its grant disbursement process. Mini-grants (for $500 and less) will now be accepted on a "rolling" basis from July 1-April 30, with awards announced within 30 days of receipt of application. Jan. 31 is the new deadline for a traditional grant cycle (for any amount), with awards announced in early March.

To learn more, please visit www.GDEFInc.org or email Kerri Figueroa at KFigueroa@gdefinc.org to volunteer.