School on Wheels

School on Wheels Drives Bigger Impact With Google AdWords

As a school social worker, Sally Bindley witnessed firsthand the impact of poverty and homelessness on children’s ability to learn. “A lot of services focused on kids’ social needs but weren’t focusing on their educational needs,” she says.

After talking with staff at homeless shelters and advocacy agencies, Sally sprang into action. “I grabbed my mom and my best friend, and she grabbed her mom, and we went to a shelter and said, ‘We can start tutoring your kids.’ It grew organically from there.”

Sally founded the nonprofit School on Wheels in 2001 to connect volunteer tutors with children experiencing homelessness in Indianapolis. The organization has since grown to include over 400 volunteers who provide one-on-one tutoring for children grades K through 12 in nine shelters and four public schools. They also equip parents to become their children’s best educational advocates.

“Because of the web, we’re able to have a bigger impact in our community. It has revolutionized the way we operate.”

Sally Bindley, Founder and CEO

AdWords, Google’s advertising program, has helped this nonprofit grow. “AdWords allows us to do a multitude of different things,” says Sally, “such as finding volunteers, bringing in donations, and promoting our curriculum.” They also use Google Analytics to see where web visitors are coming from. And their YouTube channel includes tips for tutors on engaging children as well as videos to raise awareness about families experiencing homelessness. “People don’t really realize that homelessness is a problem,” Sally explains. “Google tools help us reach more people and show them that this is an issue. The more people know, the more they’ll be part of the solution.”

School on Wheels has 21 employees.

School on Wheels today hopes to break the cycle of homelessness and “eventually go out of business” as a result of doing so. With numerous success stories of their students going on to college and pursuing rewarding careers, their hope is becoming more and more of a reality. “We’re really making a lasting impact on these children’s lives,” Sally remarks.

Google helps Sally further that impact by enabling the organization to reach more volunteers, partners, and donors—and serve more children and families—while remaining a lean operation. “We couldn’t do this using the phone and pieces of paper,” she says. “This could only happen through the use of technology.”

For more information on the School on Wheels case study, visit

Content provided by Google.

Previous Article
Sales goals

How to Set Realistic Sales Goals for Growing Your Startup

Next Article
women entrepreneurs

Veteran Entrepreneur Stephanie Breedlove Shares Essential Business Advice

Related Posts
Read More

The Fear of Commitment: Why ‘No Obligation’ Is Music to Your Customers’ Ears

We live in a world with endless options and opportunities: where to live, where to eat, where to travel. Things to do, things to see… …Things to buy.  With so many options (and many at their fingertips), why would customers want to commit to something? They wouldn’t. And often don’t. After all, having too many...
home-based businesses
Read More

The Value of Home-Based Businesses to Economic Recovery

The challenge of America’s economic recovery, in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, is to spread it to every community – and especially those that have been historically excluded. The key to meeting that challenge is to appreciate the civic and economic value of an overlooked resource: home-based businesses. There are about 16 million home-based...
Read More

The Role of a Recruiter and HR in Small Business

You’ve launched your business and it’s humming along. Like most entrepreneurs, you wear plenty of hats, including chief human resources (HR) and recruitment officer. Here’s the problem, though: You can’t handle all your employee-related responsibilities forever. If you do, you could find yourself in trouble. The issue isn’t just that you’re going to spread yourself...
Read More

Don’t Quit and Other Lessons from a Wantrepreneur Turned Entrepreneur

I’ve tried many businesses and side hustles over the past 15 years. I’ve mowed lawns, was a DJ at weddings, negotiated real estate deals, started an e-commerce business, and many others. Some of those endeavors made me money, but others didn’t. Now I have a successful digital marketing agency. People often ask me how I...