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The Village Mentoring Organization
Riverside DREAM Quarterly Report January – March 2014 Greetings from DREAM! Though it may not look it, winter is technically over, and it held many fun events for Riverside. Mentees and mentors participated in Winter Adventure Camp, new mentors were recruited this spring, and mentors are preparing for a culminating trip to the Fisher Cats Minor League Stadium in Manchester, New Hampshire. Please read below for highlights of Riverside’s winter quarter!
Highlights from the Quarter: • • • •
After a strong recruitment effort, Riverside invited 7 new mentors to their program. Mentors continue to go door-to-door to give program calendars to DREAM families at Riverside. Emily West Geary, a current Riverside co-chair, is currently working with DREAM programs staff to recruit, empower, and train founding members of UVM’s new program with Salmon Run. Riverside mentors wrote a grant to the DREAM Alumni Committee for their culminating trip to the Fisher Cats Baseball Stadium. After proposing their project, implementing a budget, and devising a transportation plan, they were awarded $200!
Fridays: • • • • • • • • •
Riverside kicked off the semester with a movie night at UVM. Mentors and mentees went swimming and played water games at the YMCA. Mentors and mentees attended a Zumba class on UVM’s campus. Mentors organized “Bring a Friend” Friday in order to recruit more mentors. Mentors, mentees, and potential recruits ate pizza and decorated cookies at the community center. Riverside organized a Valentines-themed scavenger hunt at UVM. Mentors spent one-on-one time with their mentees. Riverside went bowling at Champlain Lanes and ate pizza. Mentors and mentees went ice skating at Leddy Park. After plans for an egg-drop were cancelled last-minute, Riverside mentors thought on their feet and invited youth to campus to watch a movie and eat snacks.
Special Events for Children and Mentors: •
Two mentees and two mentors from Riverside attended Teen WAC at the Bolton Valley Resort, where they learned how to cross-country ski! A big thank you to Emily, an AmeriCorps member with the Catamount Trails Association.
Capacity Building and Fundraising: • •
This year DREAM raised $102,368 during its Annual Appeal. Gifts came in all sorts of sizes from DREAMers around the world. With the $20,731 raised during the Alumni Appeal, DREAM raised over $123,000 this quarter. DREAM was recently awarded $15,000 from the Hoehl Foundation and $5,000 from the Redducs Foundation for work at Camp DREAM. These grants were awarded for the construction of a new bathhouse in Fletcher, VT, where Camp DREAM is located, and for working with New American
Office: 30 Community Drive, South Burlington, VT | Mail: P.O. Box 361, Winooski, VT 05404 │ (802) 338-8979 | firstname.lastname@example.org
families to send their children on overnight camping trips. A hearty thanks to both foundations for supporting Camp DREAM! We look forward to serving more youth than ever before.
Mentor Training and Workshops: •
In appreciation of National Mentoring Month, 22 mentors volunteering with northern programs in Vermont were invited to Boloco for a night of celebration and thanks for their hard work. Thanks to our partnership with Boloco, DREAM was able to provide free burritos. Mentors bonded with staff, ate cake, and competed in a DREAM t-shirt raffle.
Camp: • •
DREAM staff gathered for a work day in order to prepare Camp DREAM for Winter Adventure Camp. Because of December’s severe winter storms, staff members were busy repairing the stove and removing branches from the trails. Mentees, ages 8-12, made the trek to Camp DREAM for an afternoon of skiing, sledding and broomball on the frozen Metcalf Pond. Temps were cold, but everyone had fun, made friends, and stepped outside of their comfort zones. Out of the 36 mentees who attended, 8 spent the night at Camp DREAM, braving the winter storm. Teens from all over Vermont gathered at Bolton Valley Nordic Center for a day of cross-country skiing. DREAM teamed up with Catamount Trail Association, whose AmeriCorps member Emily Licht instructed mentors and mentees and led some fun (and very difficult) rounds of sharks and minnows. All 27 teens decided to explore Bolton’s Nordic trails, where they worked together to navigate the rough terrain. Because of the long drive to Camp DREAM, staff brought Winter Adventure Camp to the Local Programs in Bennington and Poultney. Mentors and mentees met up at Emerald Lake State Park, where they went sledding and cross-country skied.
Alumni Involvement: • • •
After last fall’s successful phone-a-thons in which mentors called alumni from their respective local programs, DREAM raised $20,731 from 151 donors. We look forward to the New Alumni Welcome this spring, when we will officially invite graduating mentors into the alumni network. DREAM alumni were present at three of DREAM’s four WAC sessions this winter. Three mentor alumni volunteered for the Day and Teen sessions, and one former mentee volunteered during Overnight WAC. Three Local Programs applied for grants from the Alumni Grants Committee this semester. Two grants were for culminating activities, and one was for funding for healthy lifestyle programming for teens.
Office: • •
DREAM is excited to announce the hiring of Jen Horan, the new Regional Director of our office in Philadelphia. Jen’s hiring comes as a result of a generous contract with the Philadelphia Housing Authority. We are excited to continue building our programs in Philadelphia! DREAM welcomes Andrew Lassiter, longtime DREAMer, to the Board of Directors! Andrew was a staff member and also served as an AmeriCorps member with DREAM. We are excited to have him on Board!
Program staff from Boston and Vermont gathered in Portsmouth, NH, for two days of fun bonding activities and summer planning. Program staff also fine-tuned a program assessment tool created to facilitate stronger mentor ownership. All members of the Burlington office gathered for MLK Day, where they made Valentines cards for veterans. Thanks to Essex CHIPS and Operation: Military Kids for organizing the event!
Thank you for your ongoing support of DREAM! If you would like more information feel free to contact me. You can look back at past reports at: http://dreamprogram.org/mentor-program/vermont/local-programreports.
DREAM big, Mark Hengstler Program Empowerment Director VYT AmeriCorps VISTA email@example.com 802.338.8979