Farmers Insurance Partners with Collision Repair Education Foundation to Provide Grants to Five Schools
The insurer also donated a record 30 vehicles to schools last year.
Continuing its collaboration with the Collision Repair Education Foundation, Farmers Insurance sponsored five referral grants of $ 3,000 to support collision repair education programs in high and post-secondary schools. Instructors use the donated funds to enhance their training offerings and ensure that students graduating from their programs are ready to embark on a career in the accident repair industry.
“The Farmers team is proud of our long-standing commitment to give back and help make a positive impact in the communities we are proud to serve,” said Gerald Poirier, Strategy and Process Manager for Farmers Insurance. “As an insurer, Farmers knows how invaluable collision repair work can be in getting customers back on the road after an accident and we hope our contribution will help strengthen collision repair training programs. “
Farmers Insurance awarded five grants of $ 3,000 to:
- Livermore High School (Livermore, CA)
- Dos Palos High School (Dos Palos, California)
- Kingwood Park High School (Kingwood, TX)
- JB Hensler College and Career Academy aka Alvin ISD (Manvel, TX)
- South Plains College (Levelland, Texas)
The Collision Schools Career Preparation Reference Grants recognize schools that excel in training students in collision repair, but due to tight school budgets, the programs require additional financial assistance. Recipient schools use these funds to provide the tools, equipment, and supplies needed to enhance the learning experience for their students and raise the caliber of their graduates, helping to ensure that graduates are ready to successfully enter. the job market after graduation. Applications for the Collision Schools 2022 Career Preparation Reference Grants will be available online in January 2022.
Record of school vehicle donations in 2021
The Collision Repair Education Foundation (CREF) and Farmers Insurance also announced that their vehicle donation program to support crash schools has seen its biggest year in 2021.
“By the end of November, we had already delivered over 30 vehicles to schools so far in 2021 and many more were underway,” said Ken Kowalski, auto salvage consultant for Farmers Insurance. “Previously, our biggest year was 28 donations in 2019. This year, we are proud to announce that we have set a new record for donations delivered.
Since the program started in 2016, he has not only grown, he has evolved. The original iteration of the program called for the vehicles to be repaired by the students and auctioned off, with the proceeds going to both CREF and the participating school. In addition to selling the vehicle for free, Copart donated towing services to help ensure the vehicles reach schools.
“We’ve come a long way since those early days,” noted Kowalski. “We have learned that different schools have very different needs. While some schools repair vehicles to put them back into service, others use vehicles to help teach students to use chassis machines. Others are used repeatedly for students to learn assembly and disassembly or as a classroom learning aid, and some are fixed.
After repairing the donated vehicles, several schools then partnered with the National Auto Body Council (NABC) to donate the vehicle to someone in need as part of the Recycled Rides program. Kowalski shared one of his favorite uses of a given vehicle: “After fixing the vehicle, the school gave it to a low-income student coming out of the program to make sure he would have a way. transport to get to his new job in a body shop. . “
The current program has been streamlined for simplicity. After identifying a school in need of a vehicle donation, the Foundation acts as a liaison between Farmers Insurance and the school, facilitating vehicle selection and title transfers, ultimately resulting in the delivery of the vehicle to the school. school.
“Cars are definitely the most requested item in school crash programs,” said Melissa Marscin, CREF director of operations and administration. “We are very grateful to the farmers for coming together to help meet this need and for giving the students the opportunity to practice on newer vehicles. “
Members of the industry interested in getting involved and supporting the efforts of the Collision Repair Education Foundation to assist secondary and post-secondary crash repair training programs should contact Brandon Eckenrode, General Manager, at 312-231-0258 or [email protected] Monetary donations can be made online.