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.
Results: Solar Youth has worked with over 2,500 youth since our founding in 2000.
Target demographics: Our target audience is youth who reside in New Haven’s low income communities. These youth are faced with incredible challenges such as poverty, crime and violence in their communities, and are in great need of positive supports and opportunities to succeed.
Direct beneficiaries per year: 450
Geographic areas served: New Haven
Programs: After-school program hosted by a school or neighborhood that follows our program model, Kids Explore! Kids Do! Kids Teach! Youth learn about their local environment then develop a Community Service Action Project to address an issue they define, and a Public Education Project to teach what they learned and accomplished to others.
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EIN 06-1600471
203-387-4189
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Community Reviews

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.

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

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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.

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

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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.

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

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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!

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

Was this review helpful? 
Review from Guidestar