WILLITS, 12/10/20 — The cost of higher education has been increasing, and many young people seeking an education are left with significant student debt. This year, the pandemic has left many people in a difficult economic situation, compounding the financial challenges of those already trying to pay their student debts. To help Willits residents stay financially afloat and be able to stay in the area, the Rotary Club of Willits has created a student debt assistance program, to help local graduated stay in the area.
The applications are available beginning December 10, and will be open until February 12, 2021. According to the program announcement, “The goal of SDAP is to encourage local college or career tech graduates, who are active in the community, to stay in the Willits area.” The initial amount in the fund has been provided by an anonymous donor, but the club welcomes additional contributions so as to help more Willits residents.
Here’s the announcement from the Rotary Club of Willits, including information about how to apply, and how to contribute to help grow the fund.
ROTARY CLUB OF WILLITS FORMS STUDENT DEBT ASSISTANCE PROGRAM Applications are available for the Student Debt Assistance Program
Rotary Club of Willits member Joe Bratt brought to the club his concern about the higher cost of education which has led to graduates leaving college with huge student loans. Added to this problem is the economic crisis brought on by the Covid-19 pandemic, lost jobs, added medical costs, which will impact families for years to come.
The club mirrored his concern and led to the formation of a committee to research the problems that college graduates face when moving to Willits. The economic crisis, the high cost of housing, and less competitive wages are perceived to be the most pressing problems. The Rotary Club of Willits Student Debt Assistance Program (SDAP) was formed in August 2020. On the committee are Willits Rotarians Joe Bratt, Jenny Senter, Holly Madrigal, Gerry Gonzales, and Allisha Rigano. The committee developed an application and the criteria for choosing a Willits area college and/or career technical school graduate. The goal of SDAP is to encourage local college or career tech graduates, who are active in the community, to stay in the Willits area.
Applications will be available December 10, 2020 and the deadline for the completed applications is February 12, 2021.
Preliminary funding for 2021 was donated by an anonymous donor for the 2021 program, but our club welcomes donations to this fund so we can serve more Willits area residents in need of student loan assistance.
You can send checks, with a notation that they go to the “Willits SDAP account”. Rotary Club of Willits is an IRS 501(c) (3) charitable foundation.
**Please check out the new Internal Revenue Service special coronavirus tax provision for the 2020 tax year, that will allow more people to easily deduct up to $300 in donations to qualifying charities. This provision expires at the end of 2020.
To donate, please send checks to: Rotary Club of Willits, P.O. Box 787, Willits, CA 95490 . For applications, please send an email to: [email protected].