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cnaramore

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Review for Jumpstart for Young Children, Inc., Boston, MA, USA

Rating: 5 stars  

Jumpstart was one of the most influential experiences of my college career. The program opened my eyes to the importance of Early Childhood Education and helped me realize my personal values towards eliminating the achievement gap. I have had three different roles at Jumpstart- CM, VC, and VISTA-- and I have learned so much from each opportunity. During my year as a CM, I was able to work at a preschool in a low-income neighborhood and witness the barriers that young children face in those neighborhoods. I witnessed the power that the Jumpstart curriculum has over children-- not only does the curriculum help teach children basic literacy skills, it allows children to develop their own intrinsic motivation for learning so they succeed beyond their time with Jumpstart. As a VC, I had the opportunity to develop volunteer projects and provide key support in helping Jumpstart CMs prepare for session. Although I had some regrets not being able to work with a child every week, I could still make an impact in a child's life by inspiring others to volunteer with Jumpstart-- and in fact reach more children than if I had been a CM.

My experience with Jumpstart has been absolutely life changing. I know that part of the reason why I have decided to go into Higher Education and Student Affairs is so that I can help college students develop into people that want to make a difference in their community and who will act as advocates and role models for future generations.

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

I have seen the impact that this program has on both the children it serves and in the volunteers that participate in the program. From personal experience, I saw a young girl (4 years of age) go from not being able to write her name and being quiet to being able to write the names of every person in her family (including herself) and outgoing. As a volunteer, I have learned a lot about the achievement gap that young children face, and found how important eliminating that gap is to me.

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

If I had to make one change to Jumpstart, it would be increasing opportunities for short-term volunteers. As a student on a college campus it is relatively easy to volunteer with Jumpstart, but once you are no longer active on the campus you lose touch with Jumpstart. I would create some sort of calendar tool that would allow volunteers to search for volunteer projects on the website.

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Life-changing

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Quite well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

What one change could this group make that would improve your volunteer experience?

I want opportunities to volunteer with Jumpstart that do not involve a 300 hour commitment and not require being on a college campus.

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2011

Role:  Volunteer & CM, VC, and Alumni VISTA .