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Be The Star You Are Inc

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Arts & Culture, Children & Youth, Education, Literacy, Radio, Remedial Reading & Encouragement

Mission: OVERVIEW The prevalence of violence in the media and its potential harm to everyone is a concern for many family and community members.; Today's youth are finding it increasingly difficult to recognize that they have the ability, responsibility, and power to determine their own destiny and choose their own future. To help women, families, and youth we provide access to positive and productive information and role models through books and our first class good news radio program. We help individuals discover their passion, learn life skills, gain effective conflict management skills, and build self-esteem through increased literacy and positive programs.

STATISTICS: According to the Senate Committee on the Judiciary Survey on Children, Violence and the Media: ∑ An American child will have seen 16,000 simulated murders and 200,000 acts of violence by the age of 18 ∑ Modern music lyrics have become increasingly explicit concerning sex, drugs, and violence against women ∑ More than 10 million web sites exist on the Internet dedicated to violent words, music and images

The National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS) reported that juveniles under age 18 were involved in 27% of all serious violent victimizations, including 14% of sexual assaults, 30% of robberies, and 27% of aggravated assaults. 

Nearly four in 10 fourth-graders nationwide failed to achieve even partial mastery of the reading skills needed for school success. In our highest-poverty schools, nearly seven in 10 fourth-graders fail to read at this basic level.

Individuals with poor self-esteem are more vulnerable to peer pressure, more likely to have depressive reactions, eating disorders, and low achievement standards. They are at higher risk to abuse alcohol and drugs, partake in violent activities, and risky behavior.

MISSION Be the Star You Are! is a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) corporation empowering women, families and youth through improved literacy and positive media. Be the Star You Are! collects and distributes books and other resources as a way to raise their life skills and self esteem. This media ranges from education and advisement to inspiration and guidance and covers every aspect of life, from abuse through money management.

Be the Star You Are! is an ALL volunteer organization that operates through contributions, in-kind donations, and proceeds from fund-raising events.  Be the Star You Are! does not receive state or federal funding and is solely dependent on contributions from the community and corporations.

Be the Star You Are! has no religious or political agendas or affiliations.

Results: With no paid staff, since receiving our 501c3 status in 1999, Be the Star You Are! has served approximately 403,800 individuals and families within 101 organizations and has logged almost 469,890 volunteer hours, while distributing over $1.8 million in resources and broadcasting 1500 unique hours of positive programming. Be the Star You Are! was nominated for the California Governor’s and First Lady’s Service Awards and has been touted with five star ratings as a Top Rated Non Profit by GuideStar and Great Non Profits for the Women’s Empowerment, Arts and Culture, and the Arts Appreciation Campaigns since 2010. Be the Star You Are! radio program broadcasts to 4.5 million listeners in 219 countries and Express Yourself!™ Teen Radio, the #1 most listened to YA program on the Voice America Network reaches 132 nations. More than 2500 authors, experts, and professionals have been interviewed on our shows. Over 1000 books have been read and reviewed by our Star Teen Book Review Team . www.BTSYA.org NATIONAL OUTREACH SUCCESS STORIES 1. Operation Ground Hero¬–With the attacks on America on September 11, 2001. Several hundred local volunteers as well as volunteers around the country helped us ship over 50 pallets of uplifting materials valued at over $57,000. 2. Operation Hurricane Relief–After Hurricanes Katrina and Rita in 2005, Be the Star You Are! partnered with volunteers in the South to deliver $27,000 worth of books and resources to libraries, schools, groups, and shelters. 3. Operation Fire Relief–Southern California experienced over a dozen wildfires raging for two months from October to December of 2007. With thousands of families left homeless, Be the Star You Are! worked with relief agencies to deliver over $10,000 of books and holiday gifts to children. 4. Operation Tornado Disaster Relief-in 2011 a devastating tornado swept through the Midwest. The city of Joplin, Missouri was hard hit, destroying 262 classrooms and 16 schools. Be the Star You Are!® shipped $48,000 worth of brand new books for ages k-12 plus additional resources for parents to the Joplin schools. In addition, Access Family Care medical facilities in Neosho, Missouri were shipped books for newborns to the elderly. 5. Operation Hurricane Sandy Disaster Relief: Approximately $20,000 in resources were shipped to the East Coast 6. Operation Midwest Tornado Disaster Relief-in November of 2013 severe storms swept across twelve states in the Midwest with multiple tornadoes damaging thousands of structures. Be the Star You Are!® delivered 2000 brand new books valued at $40,000 to fire departments, churches, schools, and shelters. 7. Operation Valley Fire Disaster Relief-September 2015 the Lake County. $2500 worth of books and resources donated to the victims. Operation Hurricane Matthew Disaster Relief-October 2016. Be the Star You Are!® shipped over $16,300 worth of new books to organizations, children’s centers, non-profits in Georgia, Florida, N & S. Carolina.

Target demographics: Be the Star You Are!® supports all ages with a targeted demographic of women, families, and youth to increase literacy and positive media programming.

Direct beneficiaries per year: An audience of millions of listeners to the radio show, StarStyle-Be the Star You Are! (http://www.BethestaryouareRadio.org) broadcast to 219 countries. Our teen program, Express Yourself!™ is heard in 192 countries. (http://www.ExpressYourselfTeenRadio.com) Numerous charities who receive our books and their clients benefit from receiving our donated books. In addition, the hundreds of books reviews written by our teen volunteers help parents, teachers, and librarians choose appropriate books for children and we give a voice to the voiceless through our creative site, http://www.BTSYA.org.

Geographic areas served: Outreach programs and volunteers are global. BTSYA serves areas in need of increased literacy and positive media as well as ships books to disaster areas.

Programs: Starstyle-Be the Star You Are! Radio Program- http://www.BetheStarYouAreRadio.com Express Yourself!™ TEEN Radio Program-http://www.ExpressYourselfTeenRadio.com Express Yourself Creative Community-http://www.BTSYA.com STAR TEEN Book Review Team Letters for Literacy Community Events Book Distribution Program Reading SPELLS Success Audio Program TEEN Mentoring Speaker's Bureau Amazon Discounted Book Store Program Operation Disaster Relief Annual National Essay Contest Important URLS to follow us: Here are a few web sites you'll want to visit to get to know our programs, people, and products. 1. Starstyle-Be the Star You Are! Radio Show Cynthia Brian interviews authors and experts who help you excel in life. In T42, Heather Brittany discusses pop culture http://www.voiceamerica.com/worldtalkradio/vshow.aspx?sid=764 Always archived with descriptions, photos, and information at http://www.bethestaryouareradio.com 2. Radio Show PODCASTS: http://www.podOmatic.com/people/index/starstyle http://starstyle.podOmatic.com http://www.switchpod.com/users/starstyle/feed.xml http://bethestaryouare.mypodcast.com http://www.podfeed.net/podcast/Be+The+Star+You+Are/20565 http://podcast.com/show/228304/Be-The-Star-You-Are http://www.podcastdirectory.com/podcasts/115092 http://www.digitalpodcast.com/detail-Be_The_Star_You_Are-24233.html http://starstyle.podbean.com/ 3.Free on ITUNES: http://itunes.apple.com/WebObjects/MZStore.woa/wa/viewPodcast?id=310762728 4. SHOP UNTIL YOU DROP while helping Be the Star You Are! http://astore.amazon.com/starstyleprod http://www.goodsearch.com/goodshop.aspx (choose Be the Star You Are! to support) 5. YOU TUBE-See our movies! http://www.youtube.com/Bethestaryouare 6. BUY BOOKS ON AMAZON at deep discounts http://www.amazon.com/shops/be_the_star_you_are_charity 7. MAKE A TAX DEDUCTIBLE DONATION THROUG NETWORK FOR GOOD http://www.networkforgood.org/pca/Badge.aspx?BadgeId=109461 8. SHOP YOUR FAVORITE STORES WHILE MAKING A DONATION http://www.iGive.com/BTYSA http://smile.amazon.com/ch/94-3333882 9. VISIT BE THE STAR YOU ARE! http://www.bethestaryouare.org . VIDEO: ABC Salutes Be the Star You Are!® charity http://volunteers.magnify.net/video/Be-The-Star-You-Are

Community Stories

88 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

This is my first year in BTSYA, and my experience has been wonderful. The whole system is well organized and well managed. The communication between the editors and writers is immediate and constructive. BTSYA gives students like me the chance to contribute to charity in a fun and educational way that encourages them to share their voice in society. For this reason, I rate them as a five star organization.
When I first joined BTSYA, I did not know there was such a public way for teens to express their thoughts and views to the world. By getting involved and contributing to this organization, I see numerous ways that teens can be heard and realize how much our opinions can matter. By writing for the Lamorinda Weekly, I have the opportunity to express my views and the views of teens in our community as well as improve my writing. I can also help others by doing something I am passionate about.
I appreciate the opportunity BTSYA provides me with and plan to continue to participate in this organization for many years in the future.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have loved to be a part of this charity for the past year. After any natural disaster, Be the Star You Are immediately responds with action. The radio show produced by Starstyle Productions has also been fun to be a part of. In a society that places so much emphasis on teens growing up and problems with peer pressure, it's great to have a charity dedicated towards making sure teens are all that they are supposed to be, with positive influences in the media. Be the Star You Are allows for good interactions with other teens who also are interested in the same things as you.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I am a volunteer at Be The Star You Are and I cannot think of a better charity to devote my time to. The leader, Cynthia Bryan, is among one of the nicest people I have ever met and is solely out to help kids as much as she can. This organization is by far one of the better and more productive ones out there!

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I came across this group by browsing through volunteer's pages form an internal website from my company. I read about them to know exactly what they did and decided to volunteer. Only minutes after I sent my request, an e-mail came back with the response. I was very happy to know that I could help them, and it was awesome to read the kindness in the group's e mails.

1 Robert41

Volunteer

Rating: 5

This organization and the work of Cynthia Brian offers a great value to young people yearning to express themselves. In addition to various performing offerings BTSYA is a literacy organization and as such helps lift young people in two vital ways. First by gaining knowledge and then by expressing is in creative ways.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 4

BTSYA is a great way that teenagers reach out to other teenagers and give them a voice in their world. It also gives teens the opportunity to experience what it's like to work as a radio broadcaster, technician, photographer, etc. in the future. In addition, Cynthia Brian is a great supporter who dedicates 100% to help her volunteers achieve their dreams.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I was one of two videographers for the radio show for Express Yourself, which is a teen radio show, supported by Be The Star You Are (BTSYA). BTSYA and the Express Yourself radio show was set up in a booth at the Moraga Faire. I was surprised and pleased at the professionalism and expertise of the teen radio announcer. All the volunteers were eager to help, and did a great job. Cynthia Brian kept the BTSYA booth running smoothly and efficiently. This is a terrific program for kids and teens. I think that we need a whole lot more of Be The Star You Are and the Express Yourself radio show.

1 Rob_3

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Be the Star You Are!® under the outstanding support and guidence of Cynthia Brian has been able to create the Express Yourself Teen Radio program which is the #1 listened to program on Voice America Kids Channel. This program really does give our youth a voice in the world. When Teens Talk the WORLD Listens. Great Job everyone!!!

1 angelas

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I've provided community outreach and acted as radio coordinator for BTSYA for over a year now. I'm delighted to be a part of such a positive, uplifting organization. The all volunteer staff is a dedicated group that upholds the mission of BTSYA which is a direct result of its founder, Cynthia Brian.



Cynthia Brian is a tireless director whose mission is to uplift and empower touches everyone she encounters.



As an extension of her charity, her radio program broadcasting since 1998, continues to touch lives by promoting authors and experts that send positive messages and important educational information to better lives.







Comments ( 1 )

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Be the Star You Are!® 01/26/2011

Thanks so much for your support and for sharing! We all appreciate it. Great great work you do.

1 Vivien L.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been a volunteer with Be The Star You Are since 9th grade, and I love to incorporate my love of reading into a service for the community. This organization truly promotes the importance of literacy, giving and self-motivation. I am so grateful to be a member of this charity, and I absolutely love working with Cynthia!

Comments ( 1 )

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Be the Star You Are!® 01/26/2011

Thanks Vivien for your enthusiasm and interest in always learning new things. You are terrific!

1 Jennifer T.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I've been a volunteer since 10th grade--now, I am about to graduate college! I feel tremendously lucky to have been a part of a wonderful organization that promotes its positive message through many outlets. The radio show vitally supports BTSYA's outreach efforts!

Comments ( 1 )

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Be the Star You Are!® 01/26/2011

Thank you for your years of help and all the assistance you will be able to bring to the charity post graduation. Success to you.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been volunteering and co-hosting the radio program with BE THE STAR YOU ARE since 1998. I have always felt that BE THE STAR YOU ARE works to promote positive messages and help our listeners find meaning and passion in their lives. BE THE STAR YOU ARE has put in great efforts over the years to improve the lives of teens and at risk youth. i am so proud and honored to be part of the BE THE STAR YOU ARE family. this is an amazing non-profit

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Be the Star You Are!® 01/26/2011

Heather, thank you for being active and involved since inception. Your creativity and inspiration keeps us going. We look forward to a long relationship.

1 Katherine Kim

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Ever since I began volunteering for this organization, I've felt a resurgence in self-motivation and pride in knowing that I'm making an impact on community. I believe there is no other charity that is more winning and passionate about changing lives as this one. The hard work and dedication put into this charity by its leaders are evident by Be the Star You Are!®'s steady growth and stunning accomplishments. This organization extends its help in multiple ways, whether it may be from inviting guest authors to speak in its radio program or collecting and donating books to help fight against illiteracy. While working with Cynthia, I can truly sense her incredible dedication towards all of whom Be the Star You Are!® serves. It's a rewarding experience working for this charity!

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Be the Star You Are!® 01/26/2011

Katherine you provide such a great service-always ahead of schedule and so professional. We hope that one day you'll be in N. California to meet the volunteers! Thanks.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been impressed with Be the Star You Are! for two main reasons. First, the organization is attacking the key root cause of illiteracy: at-risk children do not have access to appropriate books. Researchers have shown that simply surrounding children with more books helps improve literacy rates. BTSYA has succeeded in donating more than $1.6 million worth of books to those who need them most. BTSYA works with other nonprofits to understand their needs and give books that are positive and appropriate. As a result, libraries, day care centers, battered women's shelters, and juvenile detention halls now have quality books. The second key strength of BTSYA is that our donations go to programs. We are an all-volunteer organization. Our founder has key relationships with publishers to get books for free. Our organization handles the shipping and matching the books with nonprofit groups in need. The bottom line is that we leverage a lean budget through our innovative partnerships with the publishing industry and the dedication of our founder and volunteers.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been involved in various projects with Be the Star You Are! for 5 years, and in this time have had the opportunity to get to know this charity inside and out. I began on the book review team, which I felt has always helped provide excellent tools for educators and youth to find good books that they are interested in and hopefully go on to develop a lifelong love of reading. This project also provides new volunteers with an easy way to become involved in the charity and to potentially develop a passion for its causes. As I gradually became involved in more projects such as events and online sales, I was truly able to sense the passion and dedication that founder Cynthia Brian and her volunteers bring to their work. Those involved with BTSYA exemplify commitment and constantly inspire the best out of each other. From knowing Cynthia and being influenced by her example, I have personally grown as a reader, a writer, a contributor to the community, and a young adult in general. Her undying optimism and especially her can-do attitude constantly inspire and become instilled in those around her. The mission statement and a dedication to carrying it out has pushed me and my peers at BTSYA to bring energy, creativity, cooperation, compromise, hard work, and a knack for problem solving to whatever tasks we are faced with. Creating the leaders of tomorrow begins with empowering the youth of today, something BTSYA really does for those who are involved it. We all know about the extensive contributions that BTSYA makes to the larger community—book donations to disaster relief efforts such as Hurricane Katrina, a long list of beneficiary organizations, thousands of dollars worth of books donated to those in need, a radio show promoting literacy, etc. To add on to that, BTSYA is equally effective in empowering its own young adult, men, and women volunteers. The charity truly sheds a positive influence on all those affiliated and empowers us to become the stars within us!

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Be the Star You Are! is a charity I decided to volunteer for b/c I believe in it's mission and the strength and commitment of its leader and contributors.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I live in Washington State, and my Aunt in California was a volunteer with Be the Star You Are! charity. She asked for my help to create a flyer for a fundraiser, and that rapidly developed into being the long-distance webmaster for the organization. Cynthia Brian is so much fun to collaborate with, and her true passion for the cause is contageous. In the purest nature of a non-profit, there is no money spent on staff or fluff. This work is all-volunteer, and money raised all goes to the good works of the program. You just have to read the reviews and praise on the website to know how many people have been helped and truly touched by Be the Star You Are!

1 jillian10

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I felt empowered by writing reviews for books that were to go directly to youths in poor areas.As a former school teacher it was empowering to have a chance to help the cause of education in schools , the cause of literacy thru encouraging the pleasure of good reading. Cynthia Brian is an inspiration in herself and one who inspires reaching for a higher self committment. She has been indefatigueable in her determination to improve the lot of those more in need. Many volunteers have been trained by Ms Brian and are the better for it. I am proud to be included in her charity.

1 angelasiekman

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I am the guest coordinator for Be the Star You Are! radio program with producer and host Cynthia Brian. Cynthia Brian is a dedicated and positive individual who tirelessly works to serve others. Be the Star You Are! is an upbeat outreach program that serves to increase literacy on the air. Broadcasting live since 1998, it serves as an important example of how we can all be a part of sending positive messages to the world. Our guest authors also really benefit from the show. Here are just some of the praises for the show: "I heard the interview and enjoyed it very much. I even enjoyed the interview before mine...I would love to come back on your show in the near future." Sheila Singleton, author of Watchful Eyes "I am again amazed at how skillfully and intelligently Ms. Brian structures the interview and moves it along. She has the intellectual breadth as well as the skill to be the first rate hostess she is." Hank Jensen, radio listener "What fun being interviewed by you. Relaxed, friendly, interesting. I was especially impressed by how thoroughly you'd read our 2 books and understood them...That's a fine service you provide to people with interesting books and projects...I'd love to be on your show again any time. Thanks a bunch to you!" Nancy Rekow, author of Minnie Rose Lovgreen's Recipe for Raising Chickens

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Be the Star You Are! is a small, grassroots charity that delivers big time results. Almost all of the charity's volunteers are teenagers who are gaining leadership skills while they give their time and energy to fulfilling the mission of the Be the Star You Are! which is distributing positive books and media to at-risk youth and women in the community.