AT&T: Boys & Girls Clubs of the Fox Valley receives $5,000 AT&T award for mentoring program for at-risk youth

Program Provides Tutoring, Career Development & College Readiness Support

APPLETON — The Boys & Girls Clubs of the Fox Valley today received a $5,000 AT&T Innovation & Investment Award to support their mentoring program and help 65 at-risk youth graduate high school prepared for college and careers.

“Key to our work is helping young people attain academic success, especially for those who are most at-risk of dropping out of high school,” said Greg Lemke-Rochon, Chief Professional Officer of the Boys & Girls Clubs of the Fox Valley. “Our mentoring services help students stay in school and graduate on time with a plan for their future education and career. We are excited to have AT&T partner with us and help strengthen these critical services.”

The AT&T donation will support the Club’s “Targeted Outreach Initiative.” The program provides mentoring-based support for at-risk students, giving them frequent one-on-one and group-based opportunities to receive guidance, learn new skills and advance toward their academic and career goals. The program involves a high level of collaboration with local schools, and activities take place both inside area schools and inside The CLUB Teen Center at the Boys & Girls Club in downtown Appleton.

To track academic progress, Club staff and volunteer mentors are matched with specific students to ensure they receive tutoring support, access to career development programs such as “CareerLaunch,” and access to college readiness activities like university campus visits. The program also helps 8th grade students successfully transition to high school.

“We are fortunate to have a wonderful organization like the Boys & Girls Club working to help our students succeed in the classroom,” said State Rep. Penny Bernard Schaber (D-Appleton). “The Club’s mentoring program not only provides one-on-one support to help at-risk youth succeed academically, but also connects youth with positive role models to boost self-esteem and confidence.”

In the United States, one student drops out of school every 26 seconds. Nationally, students from low-income families drop out at a rate four times higher than students from higher income families.

“Keeping our teenagers in high school and preparing them for success after graduation benefits our students and our communities,” said Robyn Gruner, Director of External Affairs for AT&T Wisconsin. “The Boys & Girls Clubs of the Fox Valley has a great mentoring program that is helping at-risk youth stay in school and succeed academically, and we are proud to support their efforts.”

The AT&T Wisconsin Innovation & Investment Award program provides funding to organizations and programs that improve the community by: advancing education, enhancing the environment, promoting economic development, or delivering other community services. This is the ninth award in a new program started last year aimed at supporting local organizations that enhance and give back to their communities.

The Boys & Girls Clubs of the Fox Valley has been a cornerstone of the community since opening its doors in 1998. Serving 14,000 youth a year, the Boys & Girls Clubs provide a safe, structured and positive environment for young people after school, during holidays and summer vacation.

Nationally, AT&T has a long-standing commitment to helping advance the education of the country’s young people. The AT&T Aspire program, with more than 1 million students impacted since its launch in 2008, is one of the largest corporate commitments focused on helping students graduate high school prepared for college and careers. AT&T announced a new quarter-billion-dollar expansion to the program in March, bringing the total commitment to $350 million.

Wisconsin’s Aspire investment has amounted to $1,271,465 since 2008, with the Boys & Girls Club of Green Bay, the Foundation for Madison’s Public Schools, the Milwaukee Public Schools, and the West Allis-West Milwaukee School District all receiving funding.

For more information, contact:
Jessica Erickson, AT&T Public Affairs
O: 608-282-7870
C: 608-692-5340
[email protected]