During our first 5 years in operation (2018-2023), more than $450,000 in new school supplies have been purchased by supporters for public school classrooms plus hundreds of thousands’ worth of second-hand supplies were donated. Steady supporters have included Butterfield, Ariel Re, the Green Family, Argus and others. Michael Neff, Managing Director at Butterfield, appealed to others in the business world to get involved: “Investing in education and empowering Bermuda’s students to achieve their aspirations is something Butterfield is committed to doing. The next generation are tomorrow’s leaders, and we are proud to have been able to directly contribute resources and support teachers’.

Bermuda’s public schools are having a rough start this year with hurricane interruptions, construction delays, restructuring uncertainties, inflationary pressures, the list goes on. Our public school students need constancy, including in the steady supply of good quality instructional resources to enhance their learning in the classroom.

Studies show that children having good quality tools and supplies can improve grades, creativity, attitudes towards learning, behaviour, peer relationships and self-image. Being equipped keeps children motivated and excited. Students feel as though they are equal with their peers and feel a sense of belonging and comfort. Having a creative classroom experience also promotes greater confidence and the development of essential social skills in students, allowing the child to pass through barriers that may have once hindered their learning. Now, they can learn together and help one another brainstorm and develop their thoughts as part of a team.

SPS.bm (through its founder Juliana Snelling) is thrilled to have been selected by the Meritus Foundation as a Meritus Foundation Fellow for 2023. This award recognizes Community leaders helping People and Planet and demonstrating Meritus’ values of passion, courage, humility, and empathy.  Through this grant, Meritus Foundation has very generously purchased $10,000 worth of school supplies through our SPS retail supplier AF Smith Ltd. These funds will be used to purchase school supplies specifically requested by P3 and P6 teachers in all the public primary schools to help enhance their students’ learning in the classroom. The “wish list” items will be delivered free of chargeto the classrooms in January.

SPS.bm was also selected by The Bermudian magazine as the 2019 winner of the Public and Service Award in the category of Company Community Project.

Children need constant stimulation, so lacking adequate supplies can cause them to waste their learning potential and start to act out because they have lost interest in school. So, if we can ensure that our students have what they need, then chances are they will stay focused and do what they need to do in order to stay ahead and continue learning. In short, having school supplies positively impacts the life of the student from the ground up and directly impacts students’ success.

To this end, we need your support. By purchasing discounted school supplies via our Support Public Schools, Bermuda (SPS.bm) initiative, you are putting chair pockets, geomodel folding sets, real-working cash registers, musical instruments, Judy clocks teaching analog and digital time; fraction bars, toolkits for dyslexic learners, language learning software (and everything else a child needs to be successful at school) directly into the hands of Bermuda’s future leaders.

Founded in June of 2018 by Canterbury Law Ltd attorney and Rhodes Scholar Juliana Snelling, SPS.bm is a community action initiative supporting the enhancement of learning in public school classrooms. SPS gives our public school teachers the resources they need and specifically request from SPS by giving us “Wishlists” of supplies that will enhance their teaching in the classroom. This year we are supporting P3 and P6 classrooms in all 18 primary schools and our next delivery dates are January 23 and 24, 2024. Between now and then we will obtain the Wishlists from the teachers, solicit your support (we ask for purchases to be made by October 31st, although there is no cut-off date) and we will source the requested supplies in time for January.

SPS sources the supplies (at discounted prices) from our two suppliers Phoenix Stores Limited and A.F. Smith Limited. These companies, together with our SPS volunteers, deliver the supplies free of charge to public schools on designated delivery days to teachers and students who are elated to receive them.

Principals teachers and students then send thank-you letters describing how the supplies are helping to improve our student’s education, as well as send photos showing the items in use, which are then posted on SPS.bm Visit SPS.bm to read moving letters from principals, teachers and pupils who attest to how the SPS supplies are being put into amazing use. See the wonderful thank you from St. George’s Prep Principal Ms. Gail Smith in the Royal Gazette article below.

How Can You Give?
Option 1: Each year SPS.bm asks teachers in certain year groups at all public primary schools to submit a “Wishlist” of items they need for their classroom to enhance learning in the classroom. These requested supplies are made available for sale via SPS’ website, (www.SPS.bm). You can then purchase the supplies with a credit card (multiple items may be purchased in one transaction) and also choose your preferred primary school to support. You will receive a P-tix receipt detailing the items purchased. (We can do this all for you if you need help).

Option 2: You can make a bank transfer purchase to AF Smith Ltd. and SPS volunteer Ashley Berkeley will apply the funds towards supplies that have been targeted as most in need. Funds in any amount can be transferred to A.F. Smith (HSBC 010-715613-001 or Butterfield Bank 20006 060 173876 100), with a memo note stating your name and the ref. “SPS SUP003”. Please cc: spsteam@sps.bm a screenshot when you transfer.

Option 3: Telephone Ashley at A.F. Smith Ltd. on 292-1882 ext. 173 with your credit card number and she will handle the purchase over the phone and select schools and supplies most in need with SPS. The SPS team works to ensure that schools benefit evenly over the year.

Option 4: Donate good quality second-hand supplies as noted below. We accept secondhand school supplies plus used office equipment and materials, including good quality second-hand computers, good quality office furniture and office supplies of all kinds, boxes of printer paper, etc. We also accept second-hand books, Lego, puzzles and mind improving games.

Option 5: Think Outside the Box: Ariel Re brainstormed and donated 250 top-quality reusable water bottles in our Spring 2023 drive to students at two primary schools. Principal of Victor Scott School, Ms. Kennelyn Smith said, “You don’t know how huge giving water bottles is. This is so appreciated.”

Whichever way you give, you are helping to foster the learning and development of primary school students in all of Bermuda’s public schools. Please email us to tell us you want to join the movement to help our school children to develop and love learning and love school by equipping them with inspiring supplies. Contact us at SPSteam@sps.bm or tel. 296-8444 (Canterbury Law). Our SPS volunteer team comprises Juliana Snelling, Nicolle O’Keefe, Deanne Hart, Ashley Berkeley, Rowan Dill and Magnus Henagulph. To learn more about our team and SPS, visit our website today www.SPS.bm

SPS.bm is not a registered charity, and does not solicit funds from the Government or from public sources. Supporters of the programme make direct purchases of supplies. SPS does not receive or handle funds, enabling 100 per cent of purchases to be spent on school supplies.

Contact: SPSTeam@sps.bm or +1 (441) 296-8444 (c/o Canterbury Law)
Website: www.SPS.bm | Facebook.com/sps.bm | Instagram: @sps.bm
Address: c/o Canterbury Law, 3rd Floor, Swan Building, 26 Victoria Street, Hamilton HM 12