In a converted house on 100th Street are the offices of Communities in Schools of Lakewood (CISL). In the house are a couple of back offices, a little meeting room, and a kitchen. With such spartan digs, a casual observer could only assume that there isn’t much to this organization. Yet CISL has a whole bunch of things going on in schools throughout the city, with more ideas, growth, and success stories each new year.
Their mission is to surround students with a community of support, empowering them to stay in school and achieve in life.
As their name suggests, CISL is a partnership between community members and the schools of a particular city – in our case – Lakewood. Taking advantage of the after school hours, CISL targets kids with creative programs that reinforces what they are learning in school. Communities in schools employs site coordinators at each school who coordinate the programs but also develop a rapport with kids and families to help identify students at risk and work to get them involved.
This is a huge effort taking much time and requiring many resources. But, it is very successful. Maybe this is better explained from their website.
The model we use to provide these services places a Communities In Schools site coordinator in a school to assess needs, make a plan, and coordinate intensive interventions for the kids most at risk for dropping out, along with services geared to the entire school. The site coordinator works with local community service partners such as social service agencies, businesses, health care providers and volunteers to connect students with needed resources.
All of this takes volunteers - and lots of them. Again – I will borrow the words from their website to best put forth their needs.
We are always amazed at the countless number of students we meet who carry within themselves a resilience that goes against all odds. These are the kids who come from broken homes & families who suffer various forms of hardship (as an example, all of our partner schools are above 90% free/reduced lunch) – and yet, often children have an innate desire to thrive, all they need is the caring support of an adult who believes in their future.
Who was that person for you? A parent? A teacher? A volunteer?
Communities In Schools of Lakewood has many opportunities for you to step into the life of a student right when they need it most & help them to nurture that resilience – empowering them to succeed, in school and in life.
Interested in a wonderful “pure” mentoring opportunity with Communities in schools? Here is the link you should visit.