Applications open for Palo Verde Fiesta Bowl’s Wishes for Teachers program in Arizona

The program is giving away $1.25 million this fall to 500 Arizona educators
Elementary school teacher Morgan Teigh was able to get a classroom library after being awarded a grant from Wishes for Teachers.
Published: Sep. 19, 2023 at 4:30 AM MST|Updated: Sep. 19, 2023 at 10:14 AM MST
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PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) — Many Arizona teachers have already spent hundreds of dollars this school year outfitting their classrooms, but help is on the way thanks to the Fiesta Bowl Charities. The organization’s annual Wishes for Teachers program is back and giving away more money than ever before!

“Being able to support teachers directly so that they don’t have to dip into their own pockets to support the basic needs of their classroom, that’s what this program is all about,” said Kristina Chumpol, Chief of Staff and VP of Community Investment with the Fiesta Bowl.

This fall, the organization is giving away $1.25 million to 500 deserving Arizona educators. Applications are now open here, and every teacher who wins will receive a $2,500 grant.

“The best part of this program is that teachers know their students the best, they know their classroom the best, they know what’s missing, so you tell us your wish, you name it,” Chumpol added.

The online application needs to be submitted no later than Friday, Sept. 29 at 5 p.m. It’s open to all Arizona K-12 public and charter school teachers. Winners will be selected at random and notified the week of Oct. 30.

“For some, it’s flexible seating options. For some, it’s maybe a 3D printer that they’ve always wanted for their classroom. But for others, it’s general classroom supplies. It’s the simple things. You tell us what it would be that would make your life easier, that would support your classroom, support your students and support you as a teacher,” Chumpol said.

Nancy Francque shares how being awarded a grant from Wishes for Teachers helped her start a school paper for the students.

In 2022, Fiesta Bowl Charities granted teacher wishes at 321 schools across more than 70 Arizona towns and cities.

“It’s incredible,” said seventh-grade teacher Morgan Teigh. “It’s like a feeling you wouldn’t expect because so often, we bring in so much material on our own, pencils, any supply you can imagine.” Teigh, who works at Dos Rios Elementary in Tolleson, asked for a classroom library. With the money, she was able to buy more than 300 books for her classroom, plus comfy seating and lighting.

“My students have loved it, just to have a place to go if they are done with their work and just to find a great book. That’s been a really, really great tool that I can just be like, ‘oh yeah, just go grab a book,’” Teigh said.

Find out more information about the Wishes for Teachers program here.

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