Mission: PROVIDE MENTORING, LANDSCAPE BEAUTIFICATION, COMPUTERS, SOFTWARE, TRAINING FACILITIES, TEACHER TRAINING PSAT TUTORING TO PARTICIPATING STUDENTS AND SCHOOL OF ALL LEVELS
Geographic areas served: Central Texas
Programs: The foundation launched the seedling's promise mentorship program in february 2006 at the request of a group of school principals who were concerned about the growing numbers of children affected by the incarceration of one or both of their parents. These children are often living in unstable situations and are at a greater risk for academic and emotional problems, succumbing to risky behaviors, and potentially encounters with the criminal justice system themselves. Our volunteer mentors provide stable, long-term relationships for the students and help them develop and maintain positive attitudes towards school. This year alone, seedling's promise is helping more than 565 students in dozens of schools across the austin area.
the foundation works closely with the administration, faculty and parents at selected austin isd schools to transform the school facilities and grounds. The goal is always to provide the students, staff and parents with a lovely place to learn and a school they can be proud to support. The foundation partners with the austin isd central office and grounds workers in this effort.
the foundation's college admissions mentoring project (camp) serves high achieving students in area high schools, preparing them to perform competitively on the preliminary scholastic assessment test (psat), on their college admissions test (sat), and to be admitted to the nation's outstanding colleges and universities. Camp serves a new cohort of 25 high school sophomores annually, nominated by their high school principals, and works with them through the spring of their junior year and the completion of their sat.
Seedling Foundation is a small organization that is growing by the second, with quality people, controls and programming. The difference they make in Austin's public schools is both touching and transforming, inside and out. I have helped to re-landscape falling down campuses with teachers, parents, students and volunteers from the community and seen the pride grow in a school that was formerly an eye-sore. I have watched the mentoring program grow from five pilot schools to over 400 mentors in four years, with a return rate of over 65%, because the mentors are so well supported and trained. When they walk into a school, they do not feel alone! My husband and I became so impressed with the quality of the mentors and the relationships we saw forming, that we created a series of scholarships for 8th graders that would be applied for by the mentee, with a recommendation by their mentor, and provide them with $5,000.00 for their future college, just for graduating and getting accepted to the college of their choice. We have been doing this for awhile now, and our first group will receive their diplomas this coming fall. We can't wait to see what seeds we have planted in their lives with the Seedling Foundation's help and expertise. Seedling Foundation has changed our lives and the lives of thousands of Central Texas schoolchildren for the better and I consider it a blessing in my life.