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Friends Helping Friends Gives Back

Post Date:12/10/2015 5:05 PM

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Nevitt School Office Manager Mary Sorensen (above right) accepts plaque from Friends Helping Friends President Steve Wilbur

Helping Friends is a non-profit organization available to help employees and retirees of the Tempe Elementary School District in times of financial difficulties due to catastrophic illness or hardship. It is one of the agencies that people can donate to through Tempe Elementary’s annual United Way campaign. Friends Helping Friends also holds a fundraiser each May to raise money.

Tempe Elementary employees, past and present, continue to donate to Friends Helping Friends in order to help fellow employees in need. To recognize employees’ generosity, Friends Helping Friends decided to give two awards this fall. One award went to Nevitt Elementary School for outstanding community leadership for the highest number of donors to Friends Helping Friends through United Way from 2010-2015. The other award was given to Gililland Middle School for outstanding community leadership for being the school in the District with the greatest increase in donations from one year to the next.

A Look Back

Friends Helping Friends was formed in 1993 when Bill Krahn, a physical education teacher from Connolly Middle School, learned he needed a total heart transplant. His coworkers from the Tempe Elementary School District formed the Bill Krahn Heart Fund and went to work raising money to help his family with expenses.

After Krahn’s successful transplant, the volunteers continued their work by forming Friends Helping Friends. Shortly thereafter, the organization received non-profit status so contributions would be tax-deductible.

Friends Helping Friends Today

Friends Helping Friends continues to be the helping hand for the TD3 family of employees and retirees who are facing a catastrophic illness or hardship – providing more than $188,500 in assistance to 60 employees and retirees to date (2015). More than 97¢ of every dollar goes directly to employees or retirees.

Bill Krahn passed away on June 22, 2015. This organization that he helped form will continue to serve the employees and retirees of the Tempe Elementary School District.  

If you would like to learn more about Friends Helping Friends and how it helps Tempe Elementary employees, if you would like to make a contribution, or if you or someone you know need assistance, please visit or call (480) 730-7132 or call Steve Wilbur, President of Friends Helping Friends, at (480) 694-0626.

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Gililland Middle School Principal JoLyn Gibbons (above right) accepts the plaque for Gililland Middle School

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