The Problem:   It’s very difficult to slay a giant, or to overcome any challenge of equally daunting proportions.  However, sometimes pressure applied to a specific point can have incredibly magnified effects. For example, if you can catch a giant’s thumb, you just might be able to bring him down. The trick of course, is to find the giant’s thumb; the point where targeted application of force leads to otherwise quite unlikely results. The financial problems facing our schools are enormous. Money is rarely available to fund projects or educational opportunities outside of the established budget. Teachers who would like to enhance their student’s learning experience are often faced with the cold reality that money, even relatively small amounts, is simply not available. A field trip to a museum, the possibility of augmenting the classroom curriculum with additional books, or even providing basic school supplies, are often simply not possible.


The Solution:  Project Helping Hand is designed to fill gaps in classroom budgets, for we have found that if applied to the right place, a relatively small amount of money can make a world of difference. The Project Helping Hand program provides grants of as much as $500 per classroom. From September through November, Monterey public school teachers, (grades K through 12,) are encouraged to submit grant requests. For example, a teacher may request $350 to help pay for a trip to the San Jose Children’s Discovery Museum, or $455.18 to purchase a new microscope. Since its inception in 2008, the MPSRC Project Helping Hand program has awarded 155 grants, which total $81,723.62.


The Goal:   It usually takes more than money to fix a problem.  However, sometimes adding a little bit of money to the right place is all that a dedicated teacher needs to make education both interesting and effective.  Our teachers know where the gaps in their budgets lie.  Rotary seeks to give them the helping hand to fill these gaps, and in turn, provide the type of learning experience every child deserves. As our name suggests, the program is not intended to do all the work. Rather, Project Helping Hand extends a hand to assist our teachers and our children.

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"Project Helping Hand is one of the most outstanding service projects I have seen.  Our community benefits tremendously from this program. The approach is simple and easily replicated by other Rotary clubs.  As such, I hope other clubs will follow its example and create their own Project Helping Hand programs."

Don Kremer
District 5230 Governor 2006 - 2007

Zone 26 Rotary Coordinator 2010-2013





Sponsored by: The Monterey Peninsula Sunrise Rotary Club

MPSRC Website