Jessie Streich-Kest was a kind, optimistic, determined, and hard-working young teacher who lost her life in a tragic accident during Superstorm Sandy.
A graduate of Edward R. Murrow High School, her teachers there inspired her to pursue a career in education and to become a tireless advocate for her students at Bushwick School for Social Justice. She worked long hours to ensure that their academic and emotional needs were met.
Jessie's work at Bushwick School for Social Justice was only a small part of the impact she had on the world. She touched many lives with her advocacy for animal rights and social justice. Jessie was a fierce warrior for fairness, equality, and positive change. Her short time at Bushwick School for Social Justice proved to all around her how much of an impact one person can make.
The Jessie Streich-Kest Memorial Fund provides annual scholarships to students from Brooklyn who most exemplify the spirit of Jessie Streich-Kest in their perseverance, kindness towards others, and deep commitment to social justice for all.
In 2018, the Jessie Streich-Kest Memorial Fund awarded three scholarships to high school seniors from the Bushwick School for Social Justice, Edward R Murrow High School, and Hillcrest High School. The scholarships honor the personal connection Jessie had with each school. The scholarship recipients are:
- Stefany, a graduate from the Bushwick School for Social Justice, is known as a hardworker and social justice fighter.
- Shelbie, a graduate from Edward R Murrow High School, is an activist who started a community service club at school.
- Kahiruan, a graduate from Hillcrest High School, is a peer mentor and considered a role model by his peers.
In addition to the three scholarships, the Fund also provided a grant to Positive Tails, a nonprofit that cares for animals in need.
In 2017, the Jessie Streich-Kest Memorial Fund awarded scholarships to the following graduates from local high school schools their continuing studies:
- Kevin Flores at Hillcrest High School
- Shelbie Ulysse at Edward R Murrow High School
- Nicshel Samedi and Barbara Lopez at the Bushwick School for Social Justice
In 2016, the Fund has also provided support to the following organizations:
- Positive Tails, a nonprofit set up by VERG (Veterinary Emergency Referral Group), to care for injured animals. VERG cared for Jessie’s dog, Max when he was injured in the storm that took Jessie and her friend, Jacob’s life. Through this support, Positive Tails honors Jessie’s love of animals.
- The Hance Family Foundation, for their "Beautiful Me" program.
- The Artist Volunteer Center, for volunteer community-based art projects in New York City.
Make a Gift to the Jessie Streich-Kest Memorial Fund
Donate by Mail: Please make checks payable to the Brooklyn Community Foundation – note the Jessie Streich-Kest Memorial Fund in the memo section of the check.
Brooklyn Community Foundation / Jessie Streich-Kest Memorial Fund
Attn: Development Office
1000 Dean Street, Suite 307
Brooklyn, NY 11238
Additional Ways to Give/Questions: Please contact Donor Services at 718-480-7507 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss alternative methods of giving.