WACO, TX — Tuesday morning's fire at G.W. Carver Middle School left many teachers needing to replace everything they once had in their classrooms.
Transformation Waco, the non-profit working with Waco ISD to move Carver students to Indian Spring Middle School this fall, has launched a webpage asking for the community to help replace some of the supplies lost in Tuesday's fire.
Eighth-grade reading teacher Paige Stanford moved back into her G.W. Carver middle school classroom on Monday. The next morning, she was standing outside the school, devastated to see what had happened.
"When it's your home, you know what the immediate needs are. I've gotta find somewhere to stay, I've gotta get food, I've gotta get clothes," Stanford said. "But when it's your workplace, your home away from home, it's just completely overwhelming."
Stanford, like many other teachers, buys things for her classroom out of her own pocket. Now, she has to start from scratch.
"It is devastating to hear teachers calling, saying, 'Do you think this might be salvageable?' and it's really heartbreaking to say no, I don't think there's a possible way, we're not gonna be able to get in the building. It is gone," said G.W. Carver assistant principal Krystal Collier.
Transformation Waco is hoping to make it easy for community members to lend a helping hand. Their fire relief page contains instructions for sending gift cards and links for Amazon wish lists from the school's staff.
"We're teachers and we're here for the children and we want to help out as much as possible, however, we've spent years building what we had and it's all lost," Collier said.
Stanford also said she wants to thank everyone who has already gone out of their way to donate or offer support to Carver teachers.
"It's hard for us to want to ask for help and right now we are in a spot where we truly need help," she said.
Transformation Waco said that as of Friday afternoon, more than a thousand people have visited the donation page on their website.
And while Carver teachers are certainly in need of assistance right now, teachers from all schools could use a bit of assistance getting everything they need in their classrooms. That's why Crestview Elementary School teacher Matthew McMahon decided to make a Facebook group for teachers to post their classroom wish lists.
"I feel like many teachers spend their paychecks on school supplies because they want to have that classroom that's gonna inspire students to learn when they walk through that door and they just want to create those memorable moments for their students," McMahon said.
That group is called "Adopt a Teacher - McLennan County" on Facebook.
To donate specifically to G.W. Carver teachers, head over to Transformation Waco's website.