NORTHEAST ARC AND LYNN PUBLIC SCHOOLS LAUNCH PATHWAYS TO OPPORTUNITIES PROGRAM
Someone Else’s Child, Steven Rosenthal, and Thomas Demakes Among Marblehead Organizations and Individuals Providing Funding
Northeast Arc, a not-for-profit organization that helps children and adults with, or at risk for developing, disabilities become full participants in the community, and the City of Lynn Public Schools have partnered to launch Pathways to Opportunities. This new program is designed to provide high school students with a mentorship program that will also provide life skill building, and paid internships. It will also prepare students for potential careers in the human services field.
“Many high school students do not feel connected and are experiencing greater social and economic insecurities,” said Maria Terris, Director, Pathways to Opportunities Program. “This new after school program seeks to solve that problem by providing increased affirmation, positive relationships, and structured support that also allows them to earn some money.”
“This multi-year program will serve as a connection for participating students, empowering them to discover personal growth through collaborative experiences,” added Jo Ann Simons, President and CEO, Northeast Arc. “Upon graduation, students who take part in this program will be given priority application status for open positions at Northeast Arc and will be supported, if they choose, to take full advantage of tuition reimbursement and tuition remission programs available to Northeast Arc employees.”
“We are very excited to partner with the Northeast Arc on this innovative program,” said Amy Dunn, Principal, Lynn Classical High School. “The program is open to students in grades 9-12 with activities and learning opportunities that will be tailored to different age groups at times and repeated through a student’s four years.”
Programs like Pathways are made possible by funders who see the value in programs designed to expand the future human services workforce. In all, 10 different foundations, organizations, and individuals have contributed to Pathways representing a broad commitment to the program. Some of the public and private funders supporting Pathways to Opportunities were asked why they are supporting this program and responded as follows:
“Someone Else’s Child takes a collective action approach in our areas of focus: education, youth living with disabilities, and economic justice. Pathways to Opportunities is that rare program that embodies all aspects of our mission. We are honored to support Northeast Arc in developing a mentorship program that empowers high school students to discover innate skills through collaborative, internship experiences.” - Michael Christian, Board President, Someone Else’s Child
“Investing in Pathways gives us an opportunity to make a difference in the lives of two populations of importance to us: Lynn students in need of mentoring and people with disabilities in need of support to reach their goals. Our participation in this collaborative project of Northeast Arc and the Lynn Public Schools is a win, win.” - Erin van Otterloo, Director of the Van Otterloo Family Foundation
“Pathways to Opportunities will play a critical role in addressing the workforce challenges faced by human service agencies. The program will create a pipeline of caring and compassionate people interested in working with people with disabilities, improving the quality of service delivery for years to come.” – Nancy Huntington Stager, President and CEO, Eastern Bank Foundation
“I am proud to support the Northeast Arc in building a program that complements existing resources and strengthens the human service sector in Lynn.” – Thomas Demakes, CEO, Old Neighborhood Foods
“The challenge of hiring dedicated employees is one of the most intractable problems organizations like Northeast Arc face. Pathways to Opportunities is the kind of innovation that is needed right now to build a pipeline of well-prepared, caring staff. I’m proud to continue my support of the leadership team’s creative approach by helping to launch this latest initiative.” – Steven Rosenthal, businessman and philanthropist
Additional funding for Pathways to Opportunities was provided by the Peter and Elizabeth C. Tower Foundation, John & Naomi Tomfohrde Foundation, Mabel Louise Riley Foundation, and the Massachusetts Department of Developmental Services North Shore Office.