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October 14, 2009

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October 14, 2009

I started mentoring a young man a few years ago because I was pursuing a teaching career and thought it would be a good idea. I have since decided to pursue Nursing, but have developed such a relationship with the student that I wouldn't dream of walking out on what I started with him. I feel like I probably get as much out of our time together each week as he does. I know that he appreciates what I do, because he's told me so; and I feel like I'm doing something to make a difference in someone'e life which makes me feel good. It's a wonderful program and I feel great knowing that I will have played a part in helping my student get a head start on his post-high school education.

The Great!

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

the weekly interaction that I experience with my student, Josh.

Ways to make it better...

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

NA

More feedback...

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

I've realized how great it can feel to do something for someone else without expecting anything in return.

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

the kind of people that I would like to surround myself with. They volunteer their time to make someone else's future better.

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

Make a world of difference in helping some great students in our state got a head start on a college career, that may not be financially able otherwise.

Ways to make it better...

NA

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

Getting more people involved as mentors.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

October 12, 2009

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October 12, 2009

I have been volunteering with Take Stock in Children for many years, and have enjoyed that time thoroughly. Not only have I been given the opportunity to spend time with a wonderful young lady and watch her grow into the marvelous young woman that she will be, but I get to help make a difference in her life by helping to ensure that she will attend college and follow her dreams. Thank you!

More feedback...

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

spending time with a smart and self-motivated young lady who truly appreciates the program and how it is helping her to achieve her dreams.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

October 9, 2009

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October 9, 2009

When I attended a local chamber function 9 years ago and listened to a representative from Take Stock in Children speak, I knew I had to become involved in the non-profit organization that offered a college scholarship to low-income, at-risk children. I was a CFO for a community bank and a single mother of twins. My issues of balancing work with family were minor compared to the testimonials from students that benefited from the program. When I think of Take Stock in Children, I think of two faces, Jackie and Heather. I volunteered to be Jackie’s mentor in 2000 when she was in sixth grade. Jackie qualified for free lunch, made good grades and had a guidance counselor that had hopes of Jackie being the first to graduate from high school in her family. I met Jackie at the school with lunch in hand once a week. It became obvious to me that Jackie was very smart and loved the attention. I discovered she had never read a book and we began reading Harry Potter together. In fact, we read three Harry Potter books together. I continued to meet with Jackie once a week through high school. She lived out of her suitcase during a brief period of high school and constantly struggled to stay away from the wrong crowd. Jackie and I were excited and proud when she graduated from high school. She continued her education by attending nursing school. She is now working as an LPN. At her LPN graduation ceremony, she introduced me to the audience as her best friend and had made a special button with her picture on it for me to wear. Jackie would not be where she is without having someone outside of her family show an interest in her and without having financial aid from TSIC. I would not be as empathic and loving without having Jackie in my life. In 2007, I volunteered to be Heather’s mentor. She is now in 11th grade and I have no doubt that she will graduate. She too has been a rewarding experience. I see the hope in her eyes and surprise in her eyes when she sees me show up every week with lunch in my hands. TSIC is not a hand-out. Students and parents must sign a contract to work hard together toward a goal that will enable the student to be self supportive and a good citizen upon reaching adulthood. It works because passionate people want to instill hope in children to succeed. The passionate people are state representatives that are proponents for this government funding, mentors that volunteer their time, student advocates that work full-time for TSIC and track grades and attendance, and people in the community that donate money. Over 9,000 students have graduated from High School since its inception in 1999. I encourage individuals and businesses to become involved in Take Stock In Children by either becoming a mentor or a sponsor. Please visit takestockinchildren.com for more information.

The Great!

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

Making lasting friendships and contributing to efforts in helping people become working citizens in our community.

Ways to make it better...

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

Continue to work on more networking amongst the mentors (in progress)

More feedback...

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

I have enjoyed seeing the children succeed against all odds.

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

Passionate and caring people that focus on kids, education and a brighter future

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

Provide more scholarships to low-income, at-risk students.

Ways to make it better...

I had more time and more money to give.

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

Lack of funding

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

October 9, 2009

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October 9, 2009

Though I am a brand new volunteer mentor with this program in Escambia County, Florida, I have already come to have a high regard for the program. The process of becoming involved and oriented was extremely well organized and informative. The seventh-grade student with whom I am working lives with a guardian who is not related to her and has much sadness in her life. But she sees this program as a path to a far better life and future than that of her absent family. This past week, in just our third weekly session together, she said that she would have stayed home from school that day (she had a cold) but for the fact that it was her mentor day.

More feedback...

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

provide 4-year college scholarships for 1,000 highly disadvantaged students.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

October 9, 2009

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October 9, 2009

I have been a mentor with Take Stock in Children in Santa Rosa County Florida for 3 years. I have the priviledge of mentoring an swesome young lady and feel my relationship with her has encoursged her as she strives to do her best in school and to stay out of trouble. This program gives these students the added emotional support to succeed in school and later in their lives.

The Great!

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

Meeting weekly with students during lunch to talk about what is going on in their lives. I also encourage good decision-making and meeting educational goals.

Ways to make it better...

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

More feedback...

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

Meeting students and being a friend and advisor to them

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

Caring and dedicated to the program and the students

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

Provide scholarships for many students

Ways to make it better...

More money to reach more students

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

October 9, 2009

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October 9, 2009

This is an excellent organization that really impacts lives and changes not only the student accepted into the program, but the whole family. This is a program that does break that cycle of poverty and help each student be able to realize the "American Dream."

The Great!

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

helping students set goals for the future and helping them understand that hard work is necessary to reach them.

Ways to make it better...

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

I would provide more resources for the staff.

More feedback...

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

getting to share my experiences with students. I enjoy being able to help them with college searches and helping them to realize that if they want to succeed, we are here to help.

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

The staff is fantastic. A staff of 2 and 1/2 manage all of the students- collecting the data, sending it to the state, raising funds for the program, conducting workshops for parents and mentors as well as providing training to volunteers.

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

Help more students. The limiting factor is the rising coast of college tuition. Every year that cost increases.

Ways to make it better...

I cannot think of anything.

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

The biggest challenge is having enough funding for scholarships. The costs continue to rise. Every year there are so many applicants (300) and only about 15 students can be funded.

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

The staff does a fantastic job of changing the cycle of poverty with very little resources.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

October 9, 2009

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October 9, 2009

I have been a mentor for three different students. This has been a very meaningful experience using the knowledge and skills I have to be fully "present" for my TSIC student. I have seen all three students grow their potential over time. TSIC staff have been quick to respond to any concerns I expressed and follow-up often. They make my job SO easy. This is a wonderful program, and I know we are changing lives as a result.

The Great!

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

knowing that I really did make a difference in the life of a child. I know my time changed a life.

Ways to make it better...

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

increase the number of individuals who volunteered as mentors.

More feedback...

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

getting to know my student.

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

TSIC staff were awesome and supported the students and me with all that they have. They have no idea what it means to have a 40 hour work week. They do what needs to be done to take care of kids.

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

expand the number of students served so that all students who were willing to do the work could go to college.

Ways to make it better...

I had been better able to collaborate with the school staff. TSIC staff were easy to work with. It was a bit harder to collaborate with school staff.

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

difficulty in recruiting mentors and soliciting donors for the scholarships in hard economic times.

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

this is one of the best managed programs I have ever seen. It is a prvilege to be involved.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

October 8, 2009

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October 8, 2009

I have worked with Nonprofit Organizations for the last fourteen years. By far, Take Stock in Children is the best. When I moved to Florida in 2006, I was looking for volunteer work with a nonprofit. When I discovered that Take Stock in Children helped children attain college scholarships, I had found what I was looking for. This was reinforced when I met the staff and attended the training class. Both exceeded my expectations. This is my third year as a mentor and what a rewarding experience it is. I know that many children who would financially not be able to attend college will be able to do so because of this program. Bravo to the staff, directors and all who are involved.

More feedback...

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

When I had a problem with a student, Sonia Mobley came to Wildwood High for a meeting with the student, her mother and me.

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

helpful, considerate, kind and cared about the mentees.

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

help more students who are eligable.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

October 8, 2009

more

October 8, 2009

Have had a great time mentoring my student. Have met several students that have completed the program and graduated from college. They all had good morals and were hard workers. I will continue to volunteer as long as I am able.

More feedback...

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

The staff members are all very dedicated hard working and friendly. They really care about helping the students and are willing to help out when asked.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

October 8, 2009

more

October 8, 2009

Program dedicated to the children of the community. When so many kids are being left behind they take up the slack and reach out to those who would probably be out in the streets. The program is a positive move in the right direction. We should all care so much.

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

There might be a chance for all kids to see there dream become a reality

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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