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October 7, 2009

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October 7, 2009

This is my first year as a mentor and I feel like this organization is making a huge difference in the lives of the children. My student is motivated and thrilled that she has a nonprofit such as Take Stock In Children to stand behind her goals. What a wonderful program!

The Great!

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

Seeing the chance of opportunity of an education for children.

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

Their organizational skills. Makes it easier for a mentor.

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

Very professional

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

Offer scholarships to so many more children!

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

October 7, 2009

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October 7, 2009

I first got involved with Take Stock about 6 years ago as a mentor. The Program Director, H. Marlene O'Toole was a friend with whom I had worked on the Lake Sumter United Way prior to accepting her position as the Exec. of Take Stock. She said she had a young man, 7th grade, who was an at risk student academically, from a single parent househol;d (mother)with four siblings at home. I went through the training and screening program, provided by TSIC staff, was fingerprinted, and went to the "Contract" signing ceremony in which the student is provided with a 2 year community college and a two year + 2 years at a year college if the student maintained an adequate gpa, positive disciplinary reports, was alochol, drug and tobacco free through high school graduation. My student did graduate from HS, but, unfortunately through the last two year of school did only just enough to "get by". He and I stay in touch today, he is working in an unskilled position at a local restaurant. I could never find anything that would keep him motivated, but got much support and suggestion (which we tried) from the TSIC staff. I found that the staff took great interest in each child in the program and did everything they could to provide support for mentors like myself. I truly believe that, had the program not provided my student with a mentor, he would have dropped out of school as soon as he legally could. He got very little long term support at home (unless his mother really got angry) but his change of behavior or performance lasted a very short while. Despite the fact that he had been diagnosed as ADHD adnd while I/he did not achieve the goals that we set, initially, we did get him a diploma dn he is working. I now have a new stuent that I serve as mentor and feel that he is goal oriented and a hard worker. He too is from a single parent household with a divided family some here, some in Georgia. I believe that he will continue and do well in the program.

The Great!

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

assisting at risk students achieve their goals.

Ways to make it better...

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

find more people to serve as mentors.

More feedback...

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

Watching my mentee progress.

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

very professional and supportive

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

positvely change the lives of thousands of at risk kids.

Ways to make it better...

my student would have had and taken more initiative

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

finding more adults willing to commit to the level of service required to appropriately serve as a mentor.

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

without this program nearly four hundred kids would be dropouts and a drain on society

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

October 7, 2009

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October 7, 2009

I have loved getting to know the student that i mentor in Take Stock in children..Students such as these need extra guidance and passion from someone that is outside looking in..

The Great!

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

joining with a student weekly for guidance and seeing success in her school grade point average.

More feedback...

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

October 7, 2009

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October 7, 2009

I have had a wonderful experience with the organization. I have mentored three students who have completed high school and are in college and I have high school senior this year. The program has also accepted my best friends daughter into the program and I am so happy to see someone in my personal life be able to go to college and benefit from such a wonderful program.

The Great!

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

I have helped and seen bight young students do there best to go to college

More feedback...

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

the program is a light at the end of the tunnel for these students.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

October 7, 2009

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October 7, 2009

I have worked as a mentor volunteer for one student for more than four years. She is about to graduate from high school this year. When I say "worked," that is a misnomer; every cliche you can think of related to volunteering comes to play. What I had envisioned initially as an effort became a weekly joy and my contact with the student has greatly enriched my life. Frankly, most of what I do is just listen and laugh. I discovered that she loves to tell stories and give detailed descriptions--all of which help her in her own speaking and writing courses. She also helps her own thinking by summarizing for me her course work every week and answering any clarifying questions. I am so interested in what she says that the time flies and we're always in the middle of something unfinished before the bell rings. Take Stock in Children is a highly organized and purposeful organization that focuses on an investment for a lifetime, not just for the student but for the entire family. It guarantees a low-income student two or four years of college scholarship if grade requirements, weekly meetings with the mentor and behaviors are met during high school. This "gift" is founded on relationships and uplifts the entire family and community. It is one that keeps on giving in ever widening circles--even building our nation's citizenry.

The Great!

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

a renewed appreciation of young people.

Ways to make it better...

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

expand the promotion.

More feedback...

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

the weekly chats.

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

top caliber, thorough in their follow-through, dedicated in their cause, and "good on their promises."

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

change the nation, even the world. What money that do receive, through careful management and networking, grows exponentially and each year is able to impact more and more students.

Ways to make it better...

My own experience could not have been surpassed.

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

competitive funding in this hard-stressed economy.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

October 7, 2009

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October 7, 2009

I started my work as a mentor 7 years ago because I wanted to do something positive for young people. I consider going to college to be the key turning point in my life and I wanted to be a part of helping others reach that goal as well. I grew up in a family that experienced much financial hardship and because of the education I obtained I have been able to provide a much more secure life for my children. Through this program I am now passing that on to the students I mentor. It is a great feeling! My first mentee went to Florida State University last year (that was my school too) and I could not be more proud! The program really does work!

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

the opportunity to connect with a young person and really impact them on a direct and personal level.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

One time

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

October 7, 2009

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October 7, 2009

It's easy for politicians, preachers and even pop singers to encourage us to focus on children through such catchy sayings as "the children are our future." Having said such, most go about their busy lives commuting, working, shopping,and parenting. If we truly believe the children are our future, our chlidren deserve more, and we owe them more. The TAKE STOCK IN CHILDREN is a direct infusion into at risk childrens' lives. I volunteer at a food pantry, and cut checks for charities each year hoping that there is something good as a result. But this program works. TAKE STOCK children, through no fault of their own, have the cards stacked against them. They have to swallow their pride at food banks and social service agencies -- often queuing up for hours to see the only doctor willing to take them. Unlike charity, TAKE STOCK gives the students a sense of pride. I have seen it work first hand. I've had the luxury of time, and the educational ability, to mentor a young woman since 9th grade. I've seen her grow from a scared, silent, young girl living on the fringes and being on the fringes of cliques and circles at high school, to a strong, 12th grade student leader. I've been told by school officials how she appears to look forward to our weekly visit. Our visits are HER time. I am there just for her and that matters. I tutor her in her subjects, but I also offer consistency, some personal and scholastic advice, but most of all, an ear plugged in to just her for that hour. The TAKE STOCK IN CHILDREN program offers these at-risk youth a certain amount of "cover" as well. At our school I have heard students proudly announce when queried by others why they were with their adult mentor, "that was my mentor because I am in a scholarship program." This is not charity work. It also offers a certain amount of "cover" for students when posed with drug and alcohol choices as they can state, "I can't because I'd be kicked out of my scholarship program." I think the program is not only encouraging children to have college aspirations, but perhaps is saving lives as well. I've told other adults about the program, and several have followed up. I met with my mentee this morning and shared with her these thoughts about her achievements and personal growth. She beamed! That's what the program is all about. PLEASE SUPPORT this program to the fullest. IT WORKS.

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

outstanding. The staff here in Brevard County are committed, organized, and especially responsive. As our mentees advance in school, their issues continue to change and evolve as well. The staff is always extremely responsive.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

October 7, 2009

more

October 7, 2009

This is my third year as a mentor TSIC.THis is an incredible program tha works to help kids one at a time. My experience has been very positive. My student has gone through some trials during my time with her and right now we are figuring out ways for her o raduate early with enough scholarship to pay for her college as well as living expenses! Her parents just are not there for her and when I went to the program to ask for help they stepped up and made sure that she was fulfilling all the reuqirements to stay on track. This is a truly inspired program.

The Great!

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

Seeing kids rise up out of the cycle of poverty and go to college.

More feedback...

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

knowing that my volunteer time is directly goiong to help a student succeed who doesn't have the support at home.

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

very dedicated and always willing to help.

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

Expand it's scholarship to more students. This is directed scholarship to kids who have proven that they are motivated by being willing to meet with a mentor every week, staying out of trouble, and keeping their grades up.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

October 7, 2009

more

October 7, 2009

it has been so rewarding working one on one with very bright teens as they wind their way throught the ups and downs of being a teenager. They are active, interesting and understand the commitment they have to make to earn their college scholarship. It has been very motivating to me as a mentor. We meet weekly, review grades, discuss goals and aspirations and talk about career choices.

The Great!

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

participating with the students in their "signing ceremony" where they enter a contract to keep up their grades, remain drug and arrest free, and meet with their mentor, whice will earn them a college scholarship. Great example of teaching by example.

More feedback...

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

Seeing the lights in the childrens' eyes when they experience success and receive praise for their work.

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

Very professional and dedicated to ensuring that the students accepted for this program remain successful in the program, which earns them a college scholarship and teaches them goal setting, measuring and demonstrates their ability to be successful.

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

Actually have many many more high school students plan to and complete the requirements to attend college with a scholarship.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

October 7, 2009

more

October 7, 2009

I had a wonderful experience with Take Stock In Children. They supplied me with a loving, caring mentor. They have frequent checks with me. Asking about my grades and if there is anything they could do to help. I have toured UCF because of Take Stock In Children. They have aso given me numerous back-to-school supplies so I have all I need to succeed.

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

People acting like they care about me, and somehow I'm important.

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

Very kind and caring. I have a lot of their numbers in case I need any help. Tell me how to get more money for college. Very encouraging!

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

Give lots of scholarships to need-based children who could have a bright future if they had the encouragement and resources.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

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