“Without the Sweet Foundation’s gracious investment in our reading program, we wouldn’t have been able to purchase ipads for our students.”

Marie Rodriguez

Beyond the Basics

Sweets Foundation’s Beyond the Basics program concentrates on providing the necessary resources to maximize the potential of Palm Beach County students. We developed the program in 2015, with the assistance of education professionals, to help identify needs of students that may have not been communicated with or become evident to teachers and school administrators.

With our unique approach, we assess student needs using input from the students themselves, in addition to information from teachers and staff. Elementary grade students are given a six-question survey designed to tease out both apparent and hidden needs. This input allows Sweets Foundation to address general needs, such as school supplies, as well as individual needs, such as clothing (especially school uniforms), nutrition, tutoring or mentoring. Our approach helps students to thrive by tailoring each response to their individual needs.

Since our pilot in 2015, we have conducted the survey in dozens of Pam Beach County schools, giving thousands of youngsters the opportunity to have a voice and impact their own lives. We have helped provide supplies and resources including:

  • General Supplies: These include items such as paper, pencils, notebooks, crayons and markers.
  • School Supplies: Specific classroom needs have included classroom headphones and recess equipment.
  • Individual Student Needs: Items have included hygiene supplies (such as soap, toothbrushes and shampoo), pants shirts, shoes and food. Students with specific needs received items such as sleepwear, backpacks and cookware for home. In addition, we have helped identify and assisted with hidden issues such as cases of bullying, families lacking hot water or children who needed glasses and could not afford them.
  • Every child that we survey also receives a book of their own to keep. We have learned that for quite a few of these children this is the first book they have owned.

Other Recent Projects

In addition to our School Supplies Plus program, we have accomplished a great deal over the last few years, including:

  • Presenting anti-bullying and peer pressure programs to hundreds of students under a grant from the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office
  • Providing basic necessities such as underwear and toiletries to local veterans
  • Purchasing supplies for children in Palms West Hospital
  • Hosting holiday parties for thousands of Palm Beach County’s neediest children and their families, featuring educational and enrichment activities, health information, meals, toys, treats and entertainment
  • Helping local children attend Palm Beach county events such as the South Florida Fair
  • Supporting the efforts of other local charities by providing volunteers and donations including:
    • Little Smiles
    • Kids Cancer Foundation
    • Quantum House
    • Palm Beach County Housing Authority

Assisting those in need in Palm Beach County is our passion because Sweets Foundation firmly believes that charity begins at home.