Grobanites For Charity is Merging with Find Your Light Foundation!

Jul 03 2015

Find Your Light is thrilled to welcome the incredible team that has operated Grobanites for Charity into the FYL fold. Since 2004, with amazing fan support, GFC raised almost $1.1MM for FYL while also touching many children’s lives through programs such as the Grobanite Toy Drive, Tender Totes and Heavenly Dreams, and Covered with Love. As well as all the Blanket Drives for Siyawela/Zamimpilo and gift drives for the South Central Scholars Fund.

As a result of the merge, the GFC Team will stay intact and become the Find Your Light Council, whose efforts will continue their engagement with the fans and with everyone who worked so hard with GFC in the past.

As we make this transition, we want to thank the GFC project leaders and all the volunteers for their many years of hard work and dedication. We’d especially like to thank Larry Allred (Grobanite Toy Drive), Janice LaFreniere (Covered with Love), Karen Loden and Kim Levin (Grobanites for Africa), Marilyn Webb (Tender Totes and Research), Diana Krueger (Social Media), Alice Parker (Per Te Café and South Central Scholars projects), and all the wonderful Merchandise Mailers.

Here’s to a fruitful future of working together as one organization!

Watson Elementary Technology Center of Math and Science Helps FYL!

Nov 20 2014

Miss Todd’s energetic class of kindergarteners from Watson Elementary School in Texas decided to have a cookie bake sale to benefit FYL. All proceeds were donated to the “Harmony Project” in Los Angeles. Josh sent lots of pizza over last week with a personal video message to say thanks for their hard work! Check out a video Miss Todd sent from their party!

 Here are some pictures too!

Josh visits Chalmers Elementary School!

Nov 11 2014
Welcome Josh!

Welcome Josh!

Check out Josh’s first visit to Chalmers Elementary School, a low-income school he adopted for a partnership with Turnaround Arts, and a school supported by the Academy for Urban School Leadership (AUSL)!

Turnaround Arts is a national program by the President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities, in coordination with the White House and First Lady Michelle Obama, the U.S. Department of Education and several foundations, to bring arts education programing and resources to the highest-poverty, lowest-performing elementary and middle schools in the country. It is based on the premise that high-quality and integrated arts education can strengthen school reform efforts, boost academic achievement and increase student engagement in schools facing some of the toughest educational challenges in the country.

Turnaround Arts currently works in 35 schools across the country, in 25 school districts and 11 states. As part of Turnaround Arts, PCAH and its partners provide these schools an array of arts education services, resources and materials designed to increase their chances of success, engage their community and raise the visibility of their achievements. Key to these efforts is building arts education programming that is rigorous, effective and integrated into the school, as well strategically used to target larger school challenges. The program works closely with each of the schools throughout the year to help them plan and implement their programming and ensure its quality and impact.

Each school in the Turnaround Arts network receives:

Josh and Tim Sheldon, Principal of Chalmer School of Excellence

Josh and Tim Sheldon, Principal of Chalmer School of Excellence

  • The designation of a high-profile artist who will work with the school to increase student and community engagement and promote local visibility for the school;
  • Arts supplies, licensing rights for school musicals and musical instruments;
  • A national summer conference for school teams;
  • Funding to bring local teaching artists, community arts education and cultural organizations to work in the school;
  • Training in using the arts to aid school improvement, including best practices, case studies and model lessons;
  • In-school professional development in arts integration during the school year;
  • An annual 5 Essentials school improvement survey tool administered by the University of Chicago; and
  • A summative research evaluation of the program after each year.

Interim evaluation results on the pilot phase of Turnaround Arts schools showed that participating schools demonstrate improved academic performance, increased student and parent engagement and improved culture and climate, often outperforming comparable schools in their district or state.

Watch Josh visit with the students at Chalmers Elementary School!

The Academy for Urban School Leadership is a Chicago nonprofit school management organization that creates schools of excellence by developing highly effective teachers and transforming educational outcomes for students in the lowest performing schools. AUSL was founded in 2001 and today manages 32 Chicago Public Schools serving more than 18,000 students. Over 750 teachers have graduated from the AUSL Chicago Teacher Residency. Chalmers School of Excellence is lucky to be one of the schools supported by Academy for Urban School Leadership.