Support Namaste


2016 Annual Appeal – November

Dear Friend,

Thirteen years ago, David Tanchez enrolled in Namaste Charter School’s inaugural dual language kindergarten class. He was a curious five-year-old, determined to succeed. His father, Franko, was by his side, full of hope that Namaste’s innovative education model would help his son realize his potential.

David comes from McKinley Park, where high school graduation and college matriculation rates are significantly lower than national averages. The neighborhood high school nearest Namaste has a four-year graduation rate below 70% and fewer than 50% of students enroll in college.

Partnered with Namaste, David beat those odds.

Since this photo was taken, David spent nine years at Namaste and four years in the International Baccalaureate Program at Curie High School. David is a participant in JPMorgan Chase & Co.’s The Fellowship Initiative, a competitive enrichment program for disadvantaged youth. In June, David will graduate ranked number 12 out of 463 students in his class, and he is currently a finalist for a four-year scholarship to the engineering program at the University of Wisconsin, Madison.

Namaste built David to be a life-long learner and equipped him with indelible skills for continued achievements in a complex world.

  • Namaste’s focus on health and wellness gave him the know-how to keep his body strong and mind focused.
  • Namaste’s strong curriculum prepared him to succeed academically in high school.
  • Namaste’s peaceful school culture provided the tools he needed to resolve conflicts respectfully and the confidence he needed to be himself.
  • Namaste’s Forever a Flame alumni program continued to provide valuable resources and support to ensure his success through high school and in applying to college.

box-quoteWe are proud of what we have accomplished, but there is always more work to do. We have big plans for the next 13 years – ambitious ideas designed to change the trajectory of even more children’s lives within our community and beyond.

We need your help to continue supporting our programs, spreading our work, and translating our bold ideas into realities.

This year, please join our community of dedicated supporters with your gift of $50, $100, $500 or more. Whatever your gift may be, you will make an immediate positive impact on the lives of hundreds of children and their families, not only at Namaste but in schools that learn from us each year. 

Please donate here by December 31st. If you would like to split your gift into monthly or quarterly contributions, we invite you to join the “Friends of Namaste” community at Your gift may also be made to honor someone you love this holiday season — we’ll send your loved one a personalized note to let them know! 

Thank you so much and best wishes for a healthy holiday season.


Stephanie Bloom, Head of School


Since 2004, Namaste Charter School has combined health and wellness with academic rigor in a peaceful environment, paving the way for an innovative, successful new model of urban education that is now being adopted in schools across the country. We are proud of Namaste’s incredible successes as we have grown from just 90 Kindergarten and first graders our first year to 480 students today.

While Namaste is spending nearly 20% less than the district to educate each student, we are providing much more—including 60 minutes of daily Physical Education, a healthy breakfast and lunch, no-cost family wellness and educational workshops and our “Peaceful  People” conflict resolution program.

Although Namaste receives some public funding, 20% of our operating budget must be raised through private contributions. It is through the generosity of foundations, corporations and individuals like you that we are able to provide the high quality, holistic programming that changes the trajectory of our underserved students’ lives.

There are many ways to support Namaste. Whether you join us as a Friend of Namaste, make a one-time contribution or volunteer your time – every amount and gesture makes a difference. Please contact Maggie Connelly, Development Associate, to learn about the many ways to support Namaste students and how your gift can make a difference: or 773-715-9558 ext. 256.

Thanks to your generous support, Namaste is making a measurable difference in the lives of traditionally underserved children across Chicago and nationwide. Read about our results  in our 2012 annual report.