Passidomo's Low-Profile Budget Item Provides Funding to Afterschool Charity Programs

Passidomo's Low-Profile Budget Item Provides Funding to Afterschool Charity Programs

A so-far unnoticed budget item would provide funding to afterschool programs designed to increase character-building and educational skills

Liv Caputo
Liv Caputo
March 23, 2024

TALLAHASSEE, FL—An education priority of Senate President Kathleen Passidomo has gone mostly unnoticed in the state's budget, providing funding to afterschool programs allowing children to earn money for learned skills, and then donate the money to a charity of their choice.

"It's special for the Senate President," Katie Betta, Passidomo's Communications Director, told The Floridian. "It's a cute program, and she thought it would be neat if we could expand it a bit more."

The program, Charity for Change, is a non-profit dedicated to providing affordable educational tools. The Naples-based organization offers character-building activities for children in afterschool and summer programs, encouraging philanthropy by motivating kids to earn money through activites and subsequently donate those earnings to a charity of their choice.

Charity for Change raises money from the community to be able to pay for the kids' contributions to the various charities.

The budget item, which began in an education conforming bill, would allow the program, and other programs like it, to expand through additional funding and thereby enable more children participation access. The money would be appropriated under Specific Appropriation 100, which provides over $19 million in different education inititiatives.

"They also have some federal funding that allows them to expand to some additional afterschool programs," Betta said. "It's a really nice, really cool program, and the President really loves it. It would allow Charity for Change and others that meet that statutory qualification to expand."

The non-profit's mascot is an orange orangutan named Giver, named for the program that started up the organization. Passidomo, who has appeared in a few of Charity for Change's videos, has a stuffed Giver in her office.

"She loves the mascot," Betta said.

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Liv Caputo

Liv Caputo

Livia Caputo is a senior at Florida State University, working on a major in Criminology, and a triple minor in Psychology, Communications, and German. She has been working on a journalism career for the past year, and hopes to become a successful reporter after graduation. Her work has been cited in Fox News, the New York Post, and the Daily Mail

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