Seminole County’s needs are vast, multi-faceted and touch almost every stage of life. Our class project has the potential to impact Seminole County residents who are in desperate need of our assistance, from pre-birth to end of life, palliative care. With that vision at the fore-front of our decision-making process, our class united to support three critical non-profit agencies. By working together, Leadership Seminole Class 27, has the honor and ability to work as a team to change many lives.
Leadership Seminole Class 27 selected three non-profit agencies for our legacy. We partnered with Boys Town Central Florida, The Christian Sharing Center, and Pathways to Care in order to serve a wide breadth of the Seminole community in need.
The project needs included:
Boys Town Central Florida: Bathroom Updates, soffits & gutters replaced
The Christian Sharing Center: Supplies for the center, washer/dryer replacement, and refrigerated truck.
Pathways to Care: Cafeteria & Recreational Room renovation.
Class 27 has raised funding for the above projects through the following fundraising events: Golf Tournament, Caribbean Casino Night; and a Block Party at Christian Sharing Center
CLASS 26 – HOPE HELPS
HOPE Helps mission is to prevent and reduce homelessness in Seminole County by equipping individuals and families to become self-sufficient. HOPE Helps has moved into a new [larger] facility to better assist those they serve. However, there are immediate construction and furnishing needs in order to open the Resource Center/Food Pantry and Education Center allowing HOPE to increase their volume and expand programs. Class 26 will fundraise, build and install final furnishings in the education center, offices and conference rooms. They will build out the administration building and beautify the grounds complete with irrigation system and a donor walkway. www.hopehelps.org
CLASS 25 – FRIENDS OF CHILDREN AND FAMILIES
The Class 25 Legacy of Leadership project improved the lives children. Many times when children are removed from their home due to abuse and neglect, they are unable to go into a loving foster home. Instead, they go to a group home that is not very “home like.”
Friends of Children and Families in Oviedo is a place providing the necessary services, support and care for children in need. Class 25 partnered with Friends of Children and Families, Class 25 enhanced the surroundings of a foster home for six girls, ages 14-17, so they can thrive.
The planned improvements included matching dishes, pots and pans; a stocking the pantry and freezer with food; painting the interior of the home; purchasing three computers, a printer and workstations; installing landscaping; adding a privacy fence around the backyard; building a deck and picnic area, resurfacing and repairing a pool, and installing a driveway.
The West Sanford Branch of Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Florida at the city’s Westside Community Center is the heart of the community. It is a place for children and seniors to gather to learn and socialize. The Center was in fairly good condition, but had several areas of opportunity.
Class 24’s comprehensive renovation plan included several potential infrastructure and equipment upgrades. They outfitted the Club with a new recording studio, brand new game equipment, upgraded kitchen appliances and much more. Those facility and equipment enhancements will allow the Club to expand program capacity. That will reduce a growing wait list and provide a higher quality educational and social experience.
SWOP in Winter Springs provides. vocational, educational, and community based employment training to adults with developmental disabilities. SWOP is the only agency in Seminole and Orange Counties, which goes beyond mere employment. They teach life skills to further the chances of independence for a population in our community that has few if any other options.
Class 23 devoted 1,958 volunteer hours to enhance their training and provide them with pride and self-esteem. Over a five-month period the class completed several life changing renovations. The class created two new wooden front entrance signs, landscaped, installed new tile tile flooring in the Handwash station area, replaced computers, cleaned carpet in Life Skills apartment, painted everywhere, and repaired bathrooms.
CLASS 22 – THE GROVE
The Grove Academy in Winter Springs is a safe place for adolescents to recover from serious alcohol and drug abuse disorders. Teens arrive at The Grove with the hope of healing from addiction, along with other trauma they have enduring during their young lives. Approximately 40% of the teenagers living at the Grove are in the foster care system.
Class 22 made significant improvements to the Academy. They coined their ambitious project “Operation Grovehaul.” They renovated several areas of the Academy: the boys’ common space, workout room, dining room, grounds and bathrooms. The class also hosted the youth at a series of career days for assessment and job shadowing.
The impact of “Operation Grovehaul” was tremendous for the children and staff. The project included several fundraising efforts, including a special event at Daytona International Speedway and contributed 1,385 volunteer hours.
CLASS 21 – HARVEST TIME INTERNATIONAL
Harvest Time International is a non-profit organization meeting the needs of children and families worldwide. each day the organization assists more than 500 working poor, low income, and homeless families in Central Florida with access to resources, medical care, food, basic household items and life skills classes.
Class 21 and HTI identified a deficit in the medical care provided through charities and the government for low income families without insurance: adult dental care. Lack of proper care can lead to serious health conditions including periodontal disease and cancer. The Class and HTI Created a plan to renovate and retrofit space at HTI to be used as a permanent dental care facility with the newest equipment where adults who are at or below 200 percent of the poverty level with no dental coverage can receive care.
CLASS 20 – BOYS & GIRLS CLUB OF EAST ALTAMONTE
Serving more than 100 kids daily, Boys & Girls Club of East Altamonte is a safe haven for children who need a place to grow and learn, but their facility was old and in desperate need of repair. Class 20 renovated several areas of the building including the teen center computer lab, a youth game room, the club’s kitchen, and an outdoor classroom and performance space. The impact of the renovations was tremendous – access to computers to do homework, opportunities for creative learning, positive self-expression through the arts, expanded health and nutrition programs, and, most important, a place these kids want to go to learn, grow and be part of their community in a positive way. The project brought in cash and in-kind donations and more than 1,250 volunteer hours were donated.
CLASS 19 – RESCUE OUTREACH MISSION
The Rescue Outreach Mission touched the hearts of Class 19 with its endeavors; providing emergency shelter, food, clothing, substance abuse counseling and spiritual guidance to disadvantage, needy, homeless and abused individuals and families. Class 19 built a playground on the property for the children who live there, created a multi-media workspace for the residents to have access to computers, helped establish an annual fund raiser to generate ongoing financial support, and organized numerous food and clothing drives. The project generated cash and in-kind donations, donated 1,000 volunteer hours to the project and more than 3,000 pounds of food, clothing and personal items.
CLASS 18 – THE SHARING CENTER
Class 18 was moved by the Sharing Center’s mission to prevent homelessness in Seminole County by assisting low-income families with basic necessities during financial emergencies like job loss and health problems. The class logged over 800 volunteer hours and undertook a number of activities to further the mission including installing a $20,000 alarm system, fundraising, and collecting three pickup trucks of nonperishable food items and three tons of donated clothing items for the center. The food they collected was enough to feed 75 families for a week. The class also collected gift baskets for a silent auction and made a monetary donation to the Seminole County Public School’s student Museum.
CLASS 17 – KIDS HOUSE & SAFEHOUSE OF SEMINOLE
Class 17 chose two organizations with missions to help children and families victimized by domestic violence: Kids House and SafeHouse of Seminole. The group built a fountain at the Kids House entrance to provide a welcoming environment to the children who find comfort there. At SafeHouse of Seminole the class renovated the area designated for families to gather, play, and relax. The class built computer desks and picnic benches, created a grilling station and a Chill Zone in the backyard and even added a Rain Tree to give the yard a water park feel. Class 17’s project generated cash and in-kind contributions and 700 volunteer hours.
CLASS 15 & 16 – BOYS TOWN OF CENTRAL FLORIDA
At Boys Town of Central Florida, Seminole County’s at-risk and troubled youth have found safe haven for more than 20 years. The beautiful but aging campus includes residential and learning facilities that have housed, clothed and fed over 14,000 children since opening their doors. Classes 15 and 16’s vision was to renovate all five family homes, replacing carpet and tile, installing light fixtures and cabinets reprinting and hopefully re-energizing the lives of these very deserving children. Together the classes raised money and in-kind donations and contributed more than 2,000 volunteer hours.
CLASS 14 – THE CENTRAL FLORIDA ZOO
Class 14 focused on the replacement of a dilapidated triple-wide trailer at the Central Florida Zoo. Their ambitious plans called for the construction of a log cabin to serve as a new facility for educational programs and a welcome center for the 250,000 people who visit the zoo each year. With steadfast determination the group raised money and contributed over 1,000 volunteer hours to the project. The log cabin was constructed and dedicated in the summer of 2008.
CLASS OF 2006 – IMPOWER
IMPOWER is a non-profit agency that has focused on the needs of at-risk children and families in Central Florida since 1994. The Class of 2006 showed enormous passion when they chose to renovate two multi-family homes, owned by the county and run by IMPOWER, where children aging out of foster came could live as they transition into adulthood. The project generated funding and in-kind donations, involvement from nearly 200 companies, and over 1,600 volunteer hours.
CLASS OF 2005 – ELIZABETH HOUSE
The Class of 2005 felt passionate about the cause of Elizabeth House, an organization that provides a transition home to survivors of domestic violence. These women and children need a place to heal in body, soul and spirit while putting their lives back together. The class raised funds for Elizabeth House through a casino night fund-raiser that utilized countless volunteer hours, business donations, and sponsorships. Class of 2005 also cleaned, repaired, repainted and landscaped a children’s playground in the Midway Sanford area.
CLASS OF 2004 – MEALS ON WHEELS & HABITAT FOR HUMANITY
When choosing their project, Class of 2004 decided their efforts would be best utilized for two organizations: Meals on Wheels and Habitat for Humanity. For Meals on Wheels, the class tackled chores such as mowing yards and cleaning for elderly in the county who aren’t able to do for themselves and can’t afford to hire help. For Habitat for Humanity, Class of 2004 helped build a home for a family in Sanford. Organizing official work days for each project, the class capitalized on its own talents and passions, contributing over 500 volunteer hours.
CLASS OF 2003 – ENDOWMENT FOR THE FOUNDATION FOR SEMINOLE COUNTY PUBLIC SCHOOLS
Class of 2003 had a heart for helping those who teach the children of Seminole County. The class raised money for The Foundation for Seminole County Public Schools as an endowment. Still ongoing today, the Dr. Paul J. Hagerty Teacher Technology Award provides three $250 scholarships each year for teachers in Seminole County who have done the most to integrate technology into their classroom. In addition to the endowment, Class of 2003 also did monthly “mini” projects for select non-profits.