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Supporters still seek 'More Than Nothing'

"More Than Nothing" campaign to raise funds for the Perham school district has mobilized on several fronts.

A car raffle is in the works. Also, there is a $500 tax deductible donation raffle being conducted.

More Than Nothing is a budget relief fund for the 2009-2010 school year. The campaign encourages groups, clubs and individuals to fundraiser or donate anything more than nothing.

The campaign began after the referendum vote in which an increased levy aimed at raising nearly $1 million a year failed by a 3 to 1 margin.

"The problem with such a vote is there are only two choices...all...or nothing," said Jo Strege, 549 Family Foundation director, who is also administering the funds collected through the "More Than Nothing" campaign. "In an effort to get some guidance from the community, the Perham School Board recently surveyed the public. Most of the responses were very supportive, even from those who say they voted 'no' on the referendum. Maybe many were not willing to approve the proposed levy amount on the ballot, but that doesn't mean most people do not support the school."

A new fundraising campaign has been launched by 549 Foundation board member Brian Mort. He is conducting a raffle at $5 per chance. The winner will donate the prize back to the MTN campaign--and, in turn, be able to make a $500 tax deductible donation on their tax return.

Property taxes for the school district actually dropped this year for many homeowners. The MTN campaign has asked school supporters to write a tax-deductible check for the difference so they are giving the school exactly what they gave last year.

Meanwhile, four Perham sixth graders raised $600 by running a bake sale, noted Strege.

The "More Than Nothing" goal is $200,000 to help soften the impact of the next set of cuts on the Perham district.

"Young families are attracted to a community by employment, affordable housing and a strong school for their children," said Strege. "The whole community benefits when the school is strong and provides a wide variety of educational experiences."

For more information on "More Than Nothing" go online at