Solar Youth

Rating: 5 stars   11 reviews

Issues: Education

Location: 53 Wayfarer St New Haven CT 06515 USA

Mission:

 
Solar Youth provides opportunities for young people to develop a positive sense of self and connection and commitment to others through programs that incorporate environmental exploration, leadership and community service.

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Community Reviews

1,141 Views
Rating: 5 stars  

4 people found this review helpful

An organization that makes a difference in youth and families lives in one of the most needed neighborhood. Superior management and leadership with orientation to results and real impact

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If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

make a real change in more youth life

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-4-01

Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

4 people found this review helpful

Solar Youth has an outstanding and replicable model for the development of leadership skills, targeting underprivileged youth. The organization is extremely lean with high proportion of funds going to programs.

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If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

expand to provide needed services to other areas of New Haven and other cities in Connecticut.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-4-01

Review from Guidestar
Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

4 people found this review helpful

They work in a greatly underserved area of New Haven. They are creative and energizing, providing the young people with many positive experiences.

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The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

positive, well spoken, enthused about their activities and opportunities to make a difference

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every six months

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009-11-01

Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

4 people found this review helpful

I have served on the board of Solar Youth for the past year (2009-2010) as part of the Yale School of Management's Board Service Program. I have been struck by the level of engagement of the board and the commitment of the staff. The organization has a highly capable Director, who effectively leads a group of passionate employees. The community has also embraced the mission of Solar Youth, and we often receive correspondence from program participants stating how much of an impact the organization has made. I look forward to my continued involvement with Solar Youth.

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Letters from parents of participating students, who remark on the specific and positive difference the programs have made in their children.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

seek to expand the program to another community as soon as possible.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

working with a board and an executive director who are truly excited to expand and grow the organization.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

diverse professionals from the New Haven area, who all have a passion in education and environmental causes.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

expand the number of programs, the reach of the programs, and expand geographically to other communities.

Ways to make it better...

more concrete ways in which I could contribute to the organization.

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

funding, in terms of the ability to run more programs and the opportunity to hire more staff to handle the increasing workload.

One thing I'd also say is that...

this program is a lot of fun. Any visitor to Solar Youth can quickly see how much young people love being part of the program.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-4-01

Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

4 people found this review helpful

Solar Youth is a great organization with a dedicated staff. I first came into contact with Solar Youth in 2004 in Indiana where some of their kids were participating in an environmental leadership conference. Since then, I have interacted with Solar Youth mostly in New Haven, Connecticut where they are recognized and respected as a top-notch educational organization.

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

the eyes of the kids that participate in their programs. Solar Youth is helping to foster a new generation of environmental leaders.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

try to spread to other cities in Connecticut.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

is interacting with the kids.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

truly awesome.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

make New Haven, Connecticut one of the most environmentally friendly cities in the country.

Ways to make it better...

I was able to spend more time volunteering.

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

lack of funding. Solar Youth does great work but needs as much help as it can get.

One thing I'd also say is that...

I love Solar Youth.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2008-9-01

Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

7 people found this review helpful

Solar Youth has inspired and excited so many young people in the New Haven area. By bringing environmental education and leadership building to young people without many advantages, Solar youth will have impact on the world for many years to come. I have been a supporter since it's beginnings and am amazed at the amount of work they do and numbers of youth they reach with a modest staff and budget.

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

the youth who go through the programming and then become young leaders.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

Seeing it's growth and expansion over the years, and seeing how positive an impact it has on the young people it engages.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

Thoughtful, engaging and fun loving.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

buy some land and some buildings to house staff and programming, start an endowment.

Ways to make it better...

I lived closer to where the programs happen.

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

financial, space.

One thing I'd also say is that...

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About once a year

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-1-01

Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

7 people found this review helpful

Great organization doing fundamentally good work. They are working to help the environment and work with city kids to help enrich their lives. Worthy organization, worthy work.

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

the expressions on kids faces, the volunteers that come out to support their work.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

look for strategic partnerships that reinforce the mission and keeps the organization sustainable over time.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

they are doing great work without the added infrastructure costs many organizations get caught up in.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

are dedicated, smart and passionate.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

better and more widespread.

Ways to make it better...

its always sunny and warm outside.

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

competing for funds with larger nonprofits.

One thing I'd also say is that...

keep up the good work.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About once a year

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-4-01

Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

7 people found this review helpful

Having met Solar Youth's founding executive director (Joanne Sciulli) eight years ago, I have followed the organization's work ever since. Integrating environmental and civic education with a caring, safe, supportive setting in which young people assume increasing responsibilities and leadership roles, Solar Youth is a tremendous asset to the New Haven community. Impressed by its sustained offerings and accomplishments, I have been pleased for years to contribute financially to its operations -- one of many small-scale donors who appreciate how much this nonprofit delivers on a modest budget. My most personal connection to Solar Youth has come through a young man I've mentored, now in 10th grade, who has been part of the organization since I met him when he was a 6th-grader. His maturity, social and verbal skills, environmental awareness and general sense of responsibility have grown in significant measure through his affiliation with Solar Youth. Through a collaboration involving it and the Urban Resources Initiative, he also obtained a job planting trees here in New Haven, an assignment that further fostered his knowledge of natural resources while giving him teamwork and work experience. Though youth development is not my area of professional expertise (which involves school-university partnership in development of teachers), I do have some acquaintance with the broader out-of-school field through a research project that a fellow graduate student and I did for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts about a decade ago. With that grounding in the key characteristics of high-quality youth and out-of-school programs, I can say with confidence that Solar Youth is an excellent one. It deserves greater recognition and support.

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

the continuing social and academic development of a young man who has been involved in its activities for years.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

look to and learn from the work of its executive director, Joanne Sciulli.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

watching its growth over the eight years since I encountered it and its executive director. Solar Youth has become a pillar of its neighborhood and of New Haven's youth resources more broadly.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

professional and dedicated to young people.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

reach even more young people and presumably track and support more comprehensively the longitudinal results for its graduates and their families.

Ways to make it better...

the organization had additional funding -- but even as it is, Solar Youth is highly effective and valued by families and our city.

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

succession in the event its executive director were ever to leave, and funding in an always competitive pursuit of resources.

One thing I'd also say is that...

Solar Youth merits greater recognition both locally and nationally; it's a treasure!

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About once a year

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-4-01

Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

7 people found this review helpful

This is an incredible organization. I am a former employee and very strongly believe in their mission. Solar Youth really does great work!

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What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

The incredible work they do. They fill an important niche in the community and really connect young people to their community and environment.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About once a year

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-4-01

Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

7 people found this review helpful

I got engaged with Solar Youth through a Leadership project at Albertus Magnus, and have continued to work with them over the last 4 years. I enjoy this non profit because it develops leadership in city children through a program aimed at environmental awareness. I have helped with year end work and have attended presentations where the future leaders present what they have achieved througout the year. It is a great organic leadership program which develops life skills for children that may not have access to positive mentors. The energy of the director and staff is amazing.

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

developing leadership qualities in youth. They allow for older memebers to take on more leadership roles as the mature.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Expand to other areas if possible. It might also be best kept at the local level.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

The Energy and positive attitude of the Staff.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

Eclectic, positive people that have empathy for others.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

Expand to other cities and countries and have sister progams. I would voluteer to open the Solar Youth Cambodia chapter. (OR Costa Rica, Cuba or Syria)

Ways to make it better...

I had more time and money to donate to this cause.

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

Getting the word out about what they do and how they impact the community. (Developing future leaders within a socially economically disadvantaged base)

One thing I'd also say is that...

The events are fun! It's a positive organization which makes you feel good.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every six months

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-2-01

Review from Guidestar

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