For the last four years, Jim and Peggie Morrow have dedicated their time, energy and money to Forsyth County Schools and children throughout the community.
On Friday, they were recognized for their service at FCS’ Celebration of Excellence luncheon, where they received the Don Hendricks Partnership award — the highest honor bestowed by the school system annually.
The award, which was established by the Hendricks family after the passing of Don Hendricks, a longtime member of the Forsyth County Board of Education, is given to someone who “best exemplifies the mission of the Partners in Education program and demonstrates loyalty to the school system and community.”
Through their charity, the Morrow Community Foundation, the Morrows have donated more than $180,000 to the school system and provided about 415 internet hotspots to families in need.
The foundation supports FCS’ Bring Your Own Technology initiative, a program that allows Forsyth students to use laptops, tablets and other devices in and out of the classroom, a vital key to public education in a county that focuses on technology as a learning tool.
Peggie Morrow said she and her husband created the charity after they realized Forsyth County students needed internet access.
“We started this charity and hold fundraisers to give money to the Forsyth County schools to provide students [with] internet access,” she previously told the Forsyth County News.
When they first started, she said, more than 1,000 students were without internet access at home.
Though they have reached about 400 homes, 600 families in the county with school-aged children still don’t have access, which makes fundraisers such as their iRun – a 5k race – and an annual golf tournament necessary, Morrow said.
“Our goal is to help kids get the best education they can, and they can’t do that without technology,” Morrow said. “If they can get that, then when they graduate, they’ll be better [prepared] and we can help break that cycle of poverty.
“[This award] gives our charity credibility, and I hope it’ll bring some attention to what we’re doing. When we go to sponsors, sometimes I think they think ‘Oh, you’re just giving a kid an iPad.’ But the Hendricks award acknowledges the effort we’ve made, and we’re floored and honored beyond words that the family would choose us.”