Frequently Asked SEF Questions
Click the questions below to see the answers to some frequently asked questions about Sojourner Education Foundation (SEF). If you have a question you’d like answered, send an email to SEF.
What does SEF do?
The purpose of the Sojourner Education Foundation is to serve as a community voice in district negotiations, promote the vision of the Sojourner program, raise money to support Violin, Spanish, Orff and Flow and manage Sojourner’s Marimba Program in cooperation with our Artist-in-Residence, Shera Sinell.
How is SEF different from the PTA?
The SEF and PTA are both non-profit 503(c) organizations run by volunteers who work very closely together to serve our community. While there are many instances in which our objectives overlap, our two organizations are governed differently with respect to how we raise and spend money. The PTA, as a national organization, is bound by strict bylaws that dictate how fundraising is achieved and how funds are implemented into our program. SEF, on the other hand, can pursue as much fundraising as is necessary to achieve the goal of supporting our program. Funding decisions are guided by the SEF Board, together with teacher and administration input. Decisions can be made, or changed, as determined by SEF. Together, we bridge the gap between statewide funding limitations and the vision we have for our program. Both the SEF and PTA need your support!
Who serves on the Foundation?
How does SEF raise its money?
How does SEF spend the money it raises?
Every dollar contributed to SEF serves the Sojourner community. Even our board members are unpaid volunteers! With the money we raise, we pay for Violin, Spanish, Orff and Flow, along with other exceptional educational opportunities for our students. The money SEF generates is used to pay for some program elements directly, with financial support for others paid to the North Clackamas School District.
Are contributions to SEF tax deductible?
Absolutely! SEF is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization (Tax ID #45-5275219). With the exceptions of raffle tickets, admission to the Annual Auction and the fair market value of goods purchased at the Annual Auction, all contributions made through the Program Appeal are fully tax deductible. And all of your contributions of goods and services to the Annual Auction are tax deductible to the full extent of the law.
How can I find out if my employer will match my program appeal donation?
Great question! Employer matching funds are an easy way to double — even triple! — your gift to our school. Please check with your HR Department to learn whether your employer offers matching gifts. Questions? Send an email to SEF.
How does the Foundation report to the community?
We are working to develop a more consistent schedule of community communications. For the 2016 – 2017 school year, we are planning to host joint community meetings in cooperation with the PTA. Our meetings for the 2016 – 2017 school year are:
- November 17, 2016 – 6:00pm in the school cafeteria
- January 31, 2017 – 6:00pm, location TBD
- May 23, 2017 – 6:00pm, location TBD
What's the best way to support SEF?
SEF and our community are grateful for your financial support and the commitment of your time. In addition, we ask that you consider whether you’re able to offer one of the following contributions to our Annual Auction:
- Community donations or sponsorships;
- Vacation home, condo or timeshare rental (humble accommodations could be a dream retreat for some lucky family!);
- Blazers, Timbers, Winterhawks, Thorns or Thunder tickets (tickets to sporting events are always a big Auction seller);
- Guided tours or lessons (your talent, passion, hobby or trade may be inspirational to someone else); or
- Sponsor a community sign-up party.
If you have questions about any of the above or are looking for a way to contribute to the Annual Auction, please drop us a line.
When does SEF meet?
The SEF Board meets monthly and we are hosting three community meetings in collaboration with the PTA during the 2016 – 2017 school year, which we encourage everyone to attend. If you would like to observe an SEF board meeting, please contact us and we will extend an invitation.