Posts Tagged ‘education volunteer’

City Year: Go Big or Go Home

Decalsquare_largeSpring break is over now or wrapping up, so students everywhere have turned wistful minds toward summer vacation–some will need to find jobs, others will kill time with friends and electronic devices…others will gear up for something huge, a way to make a mark on the world that is indelible and profound. They will take on a City Year. This is an education-focused non-profit that unites young people from all backgrounds in a year of full-time service. The organization is focused on fighting the national dropout crisis, and their corps of super-committed young volunteers serve as mentors, tutors, and role models to keep other kids on track. Using early warning indicators: attendance, behavior, and course performance, corps members engage in communities and districts in 24 U.S. locations–more than 6,000 volunteers are part of the effort. The volunteers start their day before the morning bell rings, and stay after the last student goes home, spending time in academic support, attendance and behavior encouragement, and school improvement projects on the campus. Teams also create new initiatives and leave-behind initiatives like study centers, clubs, community service projects, social education classes, and environmental awareness programs.

To be part of a corps team, you must be a high school or college grad (or GED equivalent); be able to dedicate ten months to service; be between the ages of 17-24; be a US citizen or right to work; pass a background check. Who do you know that’s got the right stuff and is up to the task of dedicating all they’ve got to youth being ever more exceptional? Find out how to join here.

Youth in service–it is the future.

Madonna Quietly Follows Through

After some rough patches with her foundation: bad land choices displacing and upsetting local communities, corruption amid the staff hired to do the foundation’s groundwork, abandoning her Girls’ Academy…she has come through, quietly, without much fanfare, and completed building ten schools in Malawi this year. Nearly 5,000 children will now receive their primary education through the schools that exist because of her. The communities where the schools were built (6 months ahead of schedule, by the way) were carefully chosen because they were in need of infrastructure. When you imagine that UNICEF estimates about a quarter of young boys in Malawi, and only about 16% of girls, complete their primary-level educations—due to long distances to travel to the schools and general poverty—building up these particular communities takes on even more significance.

This terrific commitment and accomplishment was achieved as a partnership between Madonna’s Raising Malawi charity (already funding millions of dollars toward the nation’s orphan populations and facilities) and BuildOn.

Discover volunteer opportunities with Raising Malawi here.

One Million Volunteers for Education–Be One of Them

There is not a lot that the majority of Americans can agree on these days, but one sad point of consensus that crosses political, religious, and economic lines is the belief that the nation’s education system is in decline and learning is not prioritized the way it should or could be by government, community, and in too many cases, family. The United Way has announced a plan to recruit one million volunteers to improve educational opportunities for the nation’s youth. The actual campaign, announced a few days ago, launches on June 21 (just happens to be the summer solstice) to sign up 1,000,000 volunteer readers, mentors, and tutors.

The Live United program makes it simple for you to sign a pledge and get stuck in, in a way that works for you. Volunteer as a family (must be at least 13 years old), as a group of friends, or as an individual…and to make it easy to commit, plug in your zip code here to find the opportunities nearest you. Since United Way is one of the most supported organizations by employers, check to see if there is already a program you can join at your workplace or place of worship…you needn’t reinvent the wheel, you just need to commit to kids. Lists of suggested books, hints about reading aloud, tricks to get over your shyness or hesitation…it is all addressed at the website. The site also boils it down to this:  Sometimes kids just need someone who believes in them.