Published On: Sat, Nov 13th, 2010

Take Stock in Children gets $1M from Helios Education Foundation

Take Stock in Children, a statewide non-profit organization with a 15-year history of working to help low-income and at-risk teenagers break the cycle of poverty by providing scholarships, mentors and hope for children, has received a $1 million donation from the Helios Education Foundation at a special event attended by more than 300 Florida business and community leaders.

“Helios Education Foundation’s community investments are driven by the goal of getting students prepared to succeed in postsecondary education,” said Foundation President and CEO Paul Luna. “Take Stock in Children has a similar mission and that’s why we’re so pleased to invest

Take Stock in Children graduate Ivaneza Moliere and her Take Stock in Children volunteer Mentor Cassandra Wiggins at a 2010 graduation celebration event.

$1 million in support of their efforts to help students advance successfully from middle school through postsecondary. We commend Take Stock for their undying commitment to students, and for achieving national recognition through the i3 program.”

This $1 million donation satisfies the requirement of a recently announced federal grant from the U.S. Department of Education awarded to Take Stock in Children, which called for a 20 percent private sector match in order to receive the award.

Take Stock in Children will use these funds for high school mentoring, enhancements to its web-based data collection system, online college readiness tools, enrollment training modules in English, Spanish and Creole and for online virtual college tours featuring major Florida colleges and universities.

With the federal and private grant funds, Take Stock in Children plans to launch its FLIGHT program (Facilitating Long-Term Improvements in Graduation and Higher Education for Tomorrow). FLIGHT is designed to improve academic and behavioral student outcomes, increase post-secondary matriculation and reduce college remediation. The program also aims to enhance utilization of student data to identify high-need students and implement timely interventions to increase their academic success.

“This investment will further demonstrate Take Stock in Children’s unparalleled success in graduating youth from high school and continuing their postsecondary education,” says Richard Berkowitz, State Board Chair of Take Stock in Children. “We applaud the Helios Education Foundation for making it possible for us to expand our new enhanced program model to serve Take Stock in Children students beyond high school and throughout their first 18 months of college.”

Take Stock in Children is an innovative organization with a proven track record of helping to close the achievement gap and increase high school graduation, as well as college enrollment rates. The organization continues to report an unparalleled high school graduation rate of 92 percent, with 81 percent enrolling in college. Those numbers are 61 percent higher and 189 percent higher (respectively) than the Florida state averages for at-risk students.

The organization serves nearly 8,000 low-income and minority students in grades 6-12 annually throughout 60 counties in Florida.

To learn more about benefiting from Take Stock in Children or becoming a valued mentor or supporter, please call 888-322-4673 or visit www.takestockinchildren.org.

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