As an employee of a non-profit organization attending a school for mostly teachers, I wanted to point out a collaboration that is often overlooked. Schools often do not have enough resources to assist students. Partnering with a non-profit organization can be beneficial.
Student voice is very important and when students find a cause they are interested in, they can come alive. Finding a non-profit group who mentors students and provides them opportunity to use their voice can help students become more active in their community.
Another way that non-profit organizations can help teachers is by offering training and support to families on various topics. They can serve as guides to families on how to navigate school systems, how to best support their students, and how to become active members of the school community.
Non-profit organizations often work with grant funding. They could be partners with a school to bring programs to their sites. Some ideas include bringing STEAM workshops to students and families, creating and maintaining school gardens, and creation and partnerships with after-school programs. This is another way for the non-profit to build a bridge and connection between schools and families.
Many non-profit groups have a mentoring program. Students can find an adult outside of the school setting who is willing to train them and work with them on a topic of their choice. Student mentoring can lead to internships or even paying jobs. This is just another way to create support systems for students in the community.
Lastly, non-profit organizations are often connected to political causes. It is important for students to learn about these causes and be taught how to advocate for their community. Non-profit groups can partner with schools and take students to legislative meetings, to meet elected officials, and rallies to bring attention to issues of concern. These opportunities assure students are learning what and why things are happening and how important it is for them to share their opinions.
-Jermaine Reece, Operations and Air Quality Manager at Little Manila Rising