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Donation Days Awareness Up Since Last Year

Parents chipped in this week to boost their kids' education and invest in the district's success next year.

The Millbrae Education Foundation's biggest annual fundraiser, Donation Days, had success Wednesday and Thursday in collecting donations from parents at five schools in Millbrae. 

Courtney Williams, an MEF volunteer who has 4 kids at Millbrae schools, said that on Wednesday, the fundraiser's first day, far more parents were prepared for it than last year. 

"We received more envelopes than we gave out," Williams said, referring to enveopes MEF had sent out for parents to mail back or bring in with cash or a check. 

Last year, many parents were still learning what Donation Days is all about, and this past Wednesday it was clear that awareness for the event had increased. 

MEF asked for $450 per child from each household, or any amount that the family could give. 

Karen Bettucchi, MEF president, is hoping to increase participation numbers. 

"It's all about participation," she said Thursday around 8 a.m., while collecting donations with several other parent volunteers outside Spring Valley Elementary School.

Bettucchi said the non-profit was beginning to look into applying for grants, in addition to continuing Donation Days, for next year. Grant givers, she said often like to see community participation. 

Millbrae School District Superintendent Linda Luna was also greeting parents who were dropping off their kids Thursday morning at Spring Valley. She said that Donation Days is an example of Millbrae community members taking the need for education funding into their own hands. 

The superintendent said that if neither state Propositions 30 or 38 pass in the upcoming election, $1 million will be cut from Millbrae schools, but even if one of them does pass, local schools are in need of funding. 

Luna hopes that Donation Days will become a natural transition for parents who were often already paying for child care directly before kindergarten. 

The proceeds from this week's Donation Days will go toward programs at Millbrae schools for the 2013-2014 academic year. 

MEF's other big fundraiser will be in January. Parents can also donate any time at the MEF website. 

Check back soon for the total amount raised this week. 

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