The Education Fund raised a record $215,000 to benefit its programs like the Ocean Bank Center for Educational Materials during its sold-out annual charity auction, For The Love of Art, presented by Ocean Bank on May 10.
The event showcased the artistic talents of students and teachers in Miami-Dade County Public Schools. Art teachers and students used materials from the Ocean Bank Center, a school supply warehouse, to create each piece up for bid. The money raised from the auction of all student and teacher artwork goes back to the school where each piece was created.
The Children’s Trust provided additional support to make the programming and support for schools possible. The Education Fund also raised money from the auction of luxury vacations, gourmet dinners and adventure experiences.
For The Love of Art is the organization’s largest fundraiser and celebrates the accomplishments of successful alumni. This year, the nonprofit awarded its Alumnus of Distinction Award to Miami Heat player Udonis Haslem, for his community service work through the Udonis Haslem Children’s Foundation and his business contributions.
“I’m honored to be the Alumnus of Distinction award recipient for The Education Fund’s Public School Alumni Achievement Award. I hold much pride in being a product of the Miami-Dade Public School system,” Haslem said. “Not only do I get to play the game of basketball for my hometown, but I’m especially proud that I get to give back to the city that first educated me by franchising and operating businesses while providing job opportunities to those in underserved communities.“
Haslem was among the 2017 class of Sapoznik Insurance Public School Alumni Achievement Award honorees, 25 leading public school graduates celebrated for their success. A hallmark of the honorees is that they have made an impact on the economic vitality of Miami-Dade County.