A Letter From Brendan

Thanks Giving

Hi everyone! My name is Brendan Van Gorder, and I’m grateful to be an intern at the Philadelphia Student Union this year. Fundraising with Jacob, I get to see the incredible generosity of those who support Philly’s students, and I get to communicate with supporters like you who are committed to making sure that the student voice is heard. I’m thankful for the strength of this movement and excited for what we can do!

The Philadelphia Student Union is picking up speed this season. Along with other groups across the city we recently achieved a big victory, a new, district-wide code of conduct, which drastically reduces the reasons students can be suspended or expelled from school.

We are gearing up for an even bigger victory in the coming months. As you know, the school district is preparing to close dozens of schools this school year. We’re going to answer this attack on education with the strongest unity and power we’ve ever had. In order to do this we need continued support from our Philadelphia community and we need everyone to increase their commitment to the Philadelphia Student Union’s cause. We want to thank you for the incredible support you’ve shown us in the past and urge you to step up to the occasion this giving season.

Strong organizations and movements are built on overcoming obstacles, and we’re currently facing a big challenge: city officials and corporate interests are trying to take away student power. Thankfully, we have amazing supporters like you who can help make sure that we win!

As you know, in order to create change, you need resources. Last year, your donations helped fund an amazing trip of over 100 students to meet with their State Secretary of Education and hold a multi-city rally in Harrisburg! Thanks to your support, we’ve also been able to take students to Washington D.C., where two national news outlets and a national journal broadcasted the conditions of schools closing in Philadelphia.

We’ve recently sent out our annual update letter, asking our supporters to stand with the Philadelphia youth leaders by giving. Some of you have been consistent supporters of the PSU; we’re asking you to increase your donation this year. Some of you have supported us in the past; we’re hoping you will reconnect with us and renew your donation.

We are also conducting a major donor campaign at this critical time, in which we will reach out to individuals we hope can make a donation of $250 or more (that’s only $22/month). If you’re interested in our major donor campaign contact Jacob [at] phillystudentunion [dot] org

Together we create a public school system in which all young people receive a high quality education. The money you donate goes far among the students and staff working together to create change in our schools and communities. If we all give as much as we’re able, we can raise the $85,000 that we need this year to win power back from those who want to close our schools and silence student voices. Let’s show them how strong our communities are and how much Philadelphia supports our students!

This Thanksgiving season, if you’re grateful for students creating lasting change in our communities, show your appreciation by increasing your support for the Philadelphia Student Union.

Happy holidays everybody,

Brendan Van Gorder

P.S. It’s important that if you’re thinking about giving, you give as soon as possible. Why not today?

Go to: www.Phillystudent.org/donate

Or send a check in the mail to:

The Philadelphia Student Union

4205 Chestnut Street 2nd Floor

Philadelphia, PA 19104

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