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January 18, 2009

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January 18, 2009

As a park interpreter, I have seen the in's and out's of 5 different organizations. I have to say that the Friends of Guadalupe River Park is one of the best organizations I have ever seen. The feeling of being family, friends, and that of having mutual support is overwhelming. Everyone in this group works hard to support everyone else, all while fulfilling their mission. I've had the gift of seeing, first-hand, their children's programs and I am impressed. These guys are on a shoe string budget and yet the quality of their educational programs is amazing. This strikes me as a fun place to attend classes and an even better place to work. Their volunteer coordinator is exception at making her people feel appreciated and well guided without losing that friendliness and caring. IF you are looking for someplace to begin your park experience, this is it. If you are looking for someplace to take your class, or send your kids after school for some extra guidance in the sciences and nature, this is definitely the place. I was so impressed I bought gift certificates so my nieces could attend the after school program or summer camp. It's a perfect blend of urban downtown and the wildness of the Guadalupe River. Don't miss out.

The Great!

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

the excitement of the kids who are taking part in the programs and the enthusiastic response of the parents when the kids have lots of share about their experiences.

Ways to make it better...

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

create a television show to put on PBS each week to help teach kids how to find nature in their own downtowns.

More feedback...

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

the way it feels like a family, personal, friendly, and welcoming. There are not stiff, stodgy, click-ish folks here.

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

the warmest, funniest, and friendliest folks.

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

bring kids in for all over the county, hire more teachers and support staff and offer even more of these exceptional programs to the folks who cannot afford to get out the the site. The do a great job of helping title one schools, but imagine what they could do if they had more money.

Ways to make it better...

some outside donors would step in and fund a couple of paid positions for extra helpers. Imagine what they could do if they had more staff!

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

donors who are being hit hard by the economy and can't give as much as they would like.

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

it's nice to see a group that genuinely and sincerely is doing something to make the down town area a better place. These folks are environmentally friendly and it shows in everything they do. They don't just talk it,the live it. It's nice to see the real deal.

Should this review be counted for a specific campaign?

Kiwanis Club of West San Jose

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2008

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