One organization has a bold mission – to make sure teachers are cared for mentally, emotionally and physically.
Teachers face many obstacles daily and the pandemic has added even more stress to that. However, The Teacher’s Resource was founded to provide exclusive self-care and support for the total well-being of teachers.
Founded in Charlotte by Sonya K. Battle in August 2020, The Teacher’s Resource is a national organization that makes sure the person behind the teacher is taken care of.
“I often say if you take a teacher and you look on their birth certificate, that first name on there doesn’t say teacher then their last name – it says their first name. We want to take care of the first name,” Battle said.
She said The Teacher’s Resource is a God idea that was sparked by a teacher’s Facebook post when learning entered the virtual space.
“After that first day one of the teachers posted on Facebook ‘Pray for teachers we’re not okay.’ And I did that, and it was through that time of prayer that this God idea was given to me and I just began to write it out and that was August the 11th, 2020,” Battle said.
The organization takes care of teachers through something they call “MEP,” which stands for mental, emotional and physical.
“I want to provide health and longevity for the person,” said Battle. “We know the saying you can’t pour from an empty cup, but how about if the teacher is the pitcher that’s pouring into the students, who is filling them up so that they can continue to pour?”
The Teacher’s Resource is already on a roll making sure teachers’ cups remain full. Last summer, the organization hosted its inaugural “Back to School, Back to You” event in Charlotte, Raleigh and Utah.
It was a self-care day to help teachers start the school year off right. The event featured goody totes, vendors, food trucks and DJs.
“I have plenty of emails of teachers saying, ‘thank you so much for thinking of us in this way, for letting [us] know, you see us.’ I hear that a lot – I’m seen,” Battle said.
They plan to host it again this year and add South Carolina and Massachusetts to the list.
The organization is also known for the self-care backpacks they give out, worth more than $250.
They feature items such as Amazon Fire tablets, Bluetooth headsets, Fitbit tracker watches and even self-care journals – all items that focus on the mental, emotional and physical well-being of educators. Students, parents and even administrators can make sure a teacher of their choice gets a self-care backpack – all they must do is pay for shipping.
Battle said teaching is a selfless calling and a selfless profession and that’s why it’s critical for educators to be taken care of.
“They are the heartbeat and the life of education and if they stop, the whole body, the whole education system will shut down,” she said.
So, what can teachers do to make sure they’re also taking care of their mental, emotional and physical states?
Battle says find out ways to fill your cup so you don’t feel pulled, torn or invisible. Also, don’t be afraid to reach out for help and schedule yourself on your calendar.
“I need you to schedule yourself on your calendar like you would your appointment for your doctor or yourself or your child.
And in that it’s all self-care – do things you know that helps refresh and refuel you,” she said
The Teacher’s Resource has much planned for this year. Soon, they’ll be starting their “Healthy Person, Healthy Teacher” campaign.
The goal is to show educators all the ways they can connect to licensed counselors, therapists and even nutritionists.
Their “Teacher’s Celebration Gala” is also in the works. It will be a night for educators to be honored in an extravagant way for all they do.
“It’s a night for them to dress up, be beautiful, bring their significant other, walk on the red carpet, get interviewed and have fine dining and entertainment,” she said.
Battle says teachers, or even those who may want to donate to or volunteer with The Teacher’s Resource, can visit their website at https://theteachersresource.org/ or email them at email@example.com.
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