CELEBRATING OUR HEROES
In 2008, the HEROES campaign was launched by the Hayward Education Foundation to acknowledge those who believe as we do -- that Hayward students deserve the best education possible. Everyday, people make a commitment to show-up, lend a hand, mentor, coach, and make time for students in their community. These selfless acts often go unnoticed and uncelebrated, yet the impact made is felt within each school and its community. These everyday activities are molding the future – by investing time in our schools and students.
Every year, we ask each school in the Hayward community to choose a “Hero.” A Hero is someone who exemplifies kindness, integrity, selflessness, and continually goes above and beyond their usual duties for the betterment of the school and the students. From a volunteer, teacher, office worker, parent, coach, resource officer, to a custodian; a Hero is anyone who the school community feels should be recognized for their commitment, selflessness and significant contributions to the greater good of the students and education.
The "Hero Dinner" was the idea of community member and philanthropist, George Pacheco, who gathered support to honor Hayward's Heroes during the Hayward Education Foundation's annual fundraiser. Unfortunately, most of the Heroes could not afford to attend the Gala, so Mr. Pacheco generously offered to take the Heroes to lunch. In 2009, he took 12 Heroes to lunch at Numinali’s.
Since then, the Hero Dinner has taken on a life of its own and has grown exponentially. Each year more people attend the dinner to celebrate and support their school’s Hero. In 2019, we honored heroes from 39 school sites in the Hayward community and had 700 people in attendance. Due to the growth, the Hayward Education Foundation felt that they could no longer host the dinner. In early 2019, the Hayward Hero Foundation was formed to continue the tradition of honoring our everyday Heroes.
To learn more about our Heroes, click here.
To support student leadership & advancement programs within the Hayward educational community and to honor and celebrate the everyday heroes who go above and beyond for the betterment of the school and the students in Hayward.
Profits support the AVID, Puente and other Hayward student-based programs who provide volunteers at the Hero Dinner. As we honor those in our community who go above and beyond, the student volunteers are achieving the same in their lives. They are in accelerated classes and maintain a high GPA. They participate in programs to further their education, learn leadership skills, and devote service hours to their community. They embody the hero spirit of kindness, integrity, and selflessness…they are our future heroes. These leadership & advancement programs often need assistance for various resources and projects. Each program providing student volunteers is asked to submit a request for a specific project or resource. Funding is disbursed after the Hero Dinner and volunteer hours are verified.