Responding to Councilwoman Christi Fraga’s proposal presented at the April 12th, 2017 City Council meeting, the Council unanimously approved the Take Stock in Children (TSIC) Mentorship Program in the City of Doral, establishing a mechanism through which City employees can mentor TSIC students at Ronald Reagan/Doral High School. Take Stock in Children is a non-profit organization, which was established in Florida in 1995, and is currently funded from both public and private sources. The organization is currently working in 800 schools throughout every county in the State of Florida, and with over $149M in Florida Pre-paid Foundation Scholarships, TSIC has already serviced over 30,000 students, and engaged over 10,000 mentors.
The TSIC Mentorship Program provides a unique opportunity for deserving low-income youth/students, to obtain a college education even if the family is unable to afford the cost. As part of the program, TSIC will identify eligible, deserving students at Ronald Reagan/Doral High School and pairs them with City employees, who commit to serving as mentors to these students for one hour per week. The mentor meets with the student at the school and offers them support, guidance, and encouragement. Prior to becoming mentors, City employees receive training regarding the principles and guidelines of school-based, academic-focused mentoring. They also participate in an orientation session and receive a manual that contains tools for addressing the general needs of their students: improving grades, preparing for college, career planning, and developing life skills. The goal is to help a child build a solid foundation of values, establish goals, improve their academic and life skills, while developing their self-esteem and confidence. The commitment is for one academic year, but mentors are encouraged to continue their service with their Take Stock in Children student over a multi-year period.
“The best part of the Take Stock in Children Mentorship Program is that eligible students that complete the program are awarded a Florida Pre-paid scholarship that they can use to obtain a university education,” said Councilwoman Fraga. TSIC is also a unique mentorship program because it does not rely solely on mentoring to ensure that students successfully complete the program. Every student is also assigned a TSIC student advocate/case manager who meets with the student and the mentor to provide assistance and program support and to ensure the student’s academic success. Student advocates work closely with mentors and school personnel to confirm that each child is achieving continued success and remains on track for high school completion, college acceptance, and transition into college life.
“Take Stock in Children is all about what I want to promote in Doral for our youth: hope for a better life as a result of additional educational opportunities which are achieved through hard work and dedication,” said Councilwoman Fraga. “Our City employees will soon begin volunteering to participate in TSIC mentorship program and I am truly enthusiastic about how Take Stock in Children will make an additional difference regarding educational opportunities in the City of Doral.” For additional information visit: http://www.takestockinchildren.org/home