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June 28, 2010
Central Pacific Bank will collect school supplies and monetary donations at its 35 branches statewide as part of the Ready to Learn program starting Thursday, July 1 until Saturday, July 31. Administered by Helping Hands Hawaii, Ready to Learn provides more than 10,000 low-income Hawaii students with new classroom supplies at the start of the school year. Collected supplies and monetary donations from the branches will remain on their respective islands. For more information, call (808) 544-0500 or 1-800-342-8422 from outside the island of Oahu or go to www.centralpacificbank.com.
“Every student deserves notebooks, pencils, pens – basic supplies needed to start the school year off right,” said John C. Dean, Executive Chairman of Central Pacific Bank. “Purchasing school supplies can be a challenge for some Hawaii families, especially in today’s economy, and we wanted to help in fulfilling these essential needs.”
Established in 1999 by nonprofit organization Helping Hands Hawaii, Ready to Learn is a recognized program by the State of Hawaii’s Department of Education. As part of the program, Helping Hands Hawaii works with government agencies, social service agencies and community organizations to distribute the donated school supplies to students in kindergarten through high school statewide.
“We’ve learned many students would rather skip classes than return to school ashamed because they have no school supplies,” said Scott Morishige, Program Director of Helping Hands Hawaii. “No child should have to go without the basic school supplies needed for a worthwhile and productive educational experience.”
Last year, during CPB’s debut four-week Ready to Learn campaign, school supply and monetary donations collected at branches statewide helped prepare nearly 2,200 Hawaii children for a new school year. The bank’s commitment to the Ready to Learn program is part of the financial institution’s ongoing efforts in meeting the needs of its community, including low- to moderate-income neighborhoods and minorities. In 2009, Central Pacific Bank was given the highest rating of “Outstanding” by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) for its community reinvestment performance.
In addition to the Ready to Learn, Helping Hands Hawaii connects individuals, families, and other organizations with essential human and material resources through programs such as the Bilingual Access Line and the Homelessness Prevention and Rapid Rehousing Program.