- Children & Youth
- Education & Literacy
Location113 S. McKean StreetButler, PA 16001 United States
Connecting2Tomorrow is a volunteer-led 501(c)3 non-profit organization based in Butler County. Through its mentoring service, C2T provides teens and young adults the fundamental life and leadership skills that will change their outlook. Our goal is to enable them to be successful and responsible members of their community.
C2T's in and after school mentoring programs are free to teens and young adults. The programs offer fundamental life and leadership skills to participants who then receive the benefits and opportunities of job shadowing and applying for employment with C2T business partners.
In Pennsylvania, 1 of every 4 high school students dropouts (26%) claim they dislike school and lack an interest in their future. Often this results in academic and behavioral problems in the classroom. Only 6% of these students express an interest in pursuing employment. Connecting2Tomorrow provides young people with a caring mentor who models life skills to motivate them towards academic success and improve interpersonal skills.
Our programs utilize educational and open interactive discussions, group leadership projects, and individual life coaching sessions to teach essential career skills. Connecting2Tomorrow's goal is to support and integrate these young people into employment positions and life-long careers within our community.
Connecting2Tomorrow's goal is to provide Butler County teens the skills and resources necessary to pursue higher education, enter vocational training programs, and/or become employable. C2T presents the needed training (goals, resumes, interviews, etc.), the kits supply the resources, and our partnerships' provide the employment opportunities. This combination can prevent unemployment and underemployment issues in our community. Currently several groups meet in Butler city, Butler Townships, Center Township, Slippery Rock and Karns City areas. Students do attend events from the Seneca Valley, Mars and Knock areas. Plans do include creating groups to meet in those areas.
One of our main goals has always been to enable and encourage young people to rise above the poverty
level and no longer rely on government support. As students achieving these successes, we are preventing such issues as homelessness, drug and alcohol involvement, and becoming part of the juvenile justice system.
C2T is an organization dedicated to encouraging youth to achieve their personal best and develop career goals. Since our inception, we have provided numerous free mentoring sessions to teens throughout the county. Volunteer mentors assist and guide teens and young adults in creating and setting goals for their own future and in becoming more responsible community members. We firmly believe that a better, brighter future for our teens will mean a better and brighter future for youth living in Butler County.
Our agency's mission is to: "Provide the fundamental life and leadership skills vital for teens and young adults to become successful employees and contributing members of society".
With Connecting2Tomorrow's assistance, Butler County teens and young adults obtain the basic skills needed to become productive, responsible and successful members of society. Through projects and interactive learning programs, we instill the confidence necessary for these young people to bridge the gap and become employable and prosperous members of our community. Students who participate in our program are able to apply to one of our business partners for employment. C2T is impacting the poverty issue in our community by assisting students with obtaining employment and setting career goals.
Connecting2Tomorrow mentors students 12 years and older throughout Butler County. After-school programs our provided to the students in their local neighborhoods. C2T's program provides life skills support for students from both ends of the grading and the economic spectrum. Whether they achieve high honors or struggle with academics; whether from a low-income household, homeless, children & youth services, the juvenile justice system, or the traditional middle-class household, C2T believes our program can help them to achieve. Our goal is to assist all students to become motivated, excited, and better prepared for their future.
We believe our program is important to our community as we assist students in graduating from high school and creating career goals. Students who participate in our program will be able recognize their potential and how to handle roadblocks and setbacks. One of the first lessons taught and repeated is that failure teaches us how to succeed. These basic life skills help prepare our students for the job market and post-secondary education.
C2T believes all students can benefit from these life skills. We try to get students motivated and excited about their future. Any student who is 12 or older can be referred to be in a group. A student can have straight A's or be struggling in school. In C2T's program young people learn skills that will help them set goals to stay in school and prepare for post-secondary education or to join the work force.
C2T mentoring program provides different plans for different age levels:
"Better Me" (Ages 12 to 14)
Developing and strengthening fundamental life skills. Mentor(s) leads open interactive discussions on dream boards, goal setting, motivation, respect, values, conflict resolution, interpersonal skills and bullying. Students receive "Better Me" kits (resources on respect, communication, skill sets on dealing with conflict and breaking down barriers, as well as coping skills items to deal with bullying, and apps that help with texting and social media conduct.) Parents and professional partners also receive the C2T "Bullying Resource Library."
Projected Individual Participant Outcomes: improvement in school attendance, grades, communication and social skills as well as coping skills to deal with bullying. Expected Community Outcomes: increase in graduation rates, students with positive attitudes towards education and academic achievement, a decrease in school bullying, and students with improved communication skills.
"Money Matters!" (Ages 15 to 18)
Developing and strengthening financial literacy and banking skills features sessions on personal budgeting, bank accounts, managing credit and securing one's identity. Students receive "Money Matters" kits (calculators, resources on budgeting, glossary of financial terms, list of digital budgeting apps, and resources to help with budgeting and banking.)
Projected Individual Participant Outcomes: managing banking accounts, developing personal budgeting skills and identifying risky behaviors, applying for credit, reading a credit statement, developing an understanding of how credit can harm your financial health, and securing their personal identity.
Expected Community Outcomes: fewer individuals and families living paycheck to paycheck, less dependency on government financial support, and individuals living a more financially secure lifestyle.
"Worked Up!" (Ages 15 to 18)
Developing career readiness skills features interactive sessions on career assessments, work ethic development, becoming a valuable employee, and giving back to the community. Students receive "Career Readiness" kits (financial support for an interview, or work clothes, personal hygiene items, C2T's "Career Training Resource Library," resources for practice interview questions, grooming tips, sample resumes and cover letters, notebook, interview clothing shopping list, and list of local volunteer opportunities.) C2T has partnered with McDonalds of Butler, Family Bowlaway and Butler Technologies to create the Worked Up! Program - a program that partners with select area merchants interested in hiring teens and young adults. Here is how it works:
? For their application process, C2T submits the names of graduates from our program to employers.
? These graduates will have participated in our mentoring curriculum.
? If hired, C2T continues to provide mentoring support during their probationary work status. Graduates (the new employee) receive assistance with any work challenges and rewards for their efforts.
The company is not committed to hiring these applicants, but if they do their new employee will receive our extra support. Our goal is to not only make them employable but also to create good employees.
Projected Individual Participant Outcomes: surveying and selecting career interest, completing job applications, professional interview skills, improved abilities to work with co-workers and employers, and volunteering and becoming more involved in their community.
Expected Community Outcomes: increase the county employee growth rate and decrease the number of students and families living below the poverty level.
"Foundations of Etiquette" (Ages 12 to 18)
Developing manners, respect, and etiquette skills. Students are encouraged to arrive appropriately dressed while they receive etiquette instructions and enjoy a gourmet meal. Students are engaged in open discussion during the event and practice their newly learned skills. Participants receive Etiquette Kits (personal hygiene items, thank you cards, resources on general etiquette practices including pictorial directories on table settings, manners for attending a served meal versus a buffet, and cell phone manners.) This will help students' in social settings and interviews.
"Youth Leadership Initiative" (Ages 12 to 18)
A collaborative program with Butler County 4H, StandTall, JusticeWorks YouthCare and Adagio Health provide three annual leadership events. Topics include Building Success; Drug Prevention: People, Places and Choices; Building Positive Relationships, Communication Skills, Career Exploration and Setting Goals and Making Choices. Events include a presentation, peer-led workshops, and team building skills.
Connecting2Tomorrow helps to empower youth in the Western Pennsylvania to make positive life choices that enable them to maximize their potential. The mentoring program uses adult volunteers to commit to supporting, guiding, and being a friend to a young person for a period of at least one year. By becoming part of the social network of adults and community members who care about the youth, the mentor can help youth develop and reach positive academic, career, and personal goals.
* Take the lead in supporting a young person through a group mentoring relationship
* Share professional and life experiences as a positive role model for youth facing challenges
* Provide educational support to enable success with homework & study skills and nurture a lifelong love of learning
* Strive for mutual respect
* Provide character building activities that build self-confidence and future focused youth
* Help set goals and work toward accomplishing them
* Make a one-year commitment
* Spend a minimum of two hours per month with up to 4 mentees in a group
* Attend an initial 2.5 hour training session and additional two-hour training sessions once during each year of participation in the program
* Attend optional mentor/mentee group events, mentor support groups, and program recognition events
* Be at least 21 years old
* Reside in Butler County or surrounding area
* Be interested in working with young people
* Be willing to adhere to all program policies and procedures
* Be willing to complete the application and screening process
* Be dependable and consistent in meeting the time commitments
* Attend mentor training sessions as prescribed
* Be willing to communicate regularly with program staff, submit activity information, and take constructive feedback regarding mentoring activities
* Have access to an automobile, auto insurance, and a good driving record
* Have a clean criminal history
* No use of illicit drugs
* No use of alcohol or controlled substances in an inappropriate manner
* Not currently in treatment for substance abuse and have a non-addictive period of at least five years
* Not currently in treatment for a mental disorder or hospitalized for such in the past three years
* Willing listener
* Encouraging and supportive
* Patient and flexible
* Tolerant and respectful of individual differences
* Personal fulfillment through contribution to the community and individuals
* Satisfaction in helping someone mature, progress, and achieve goals
* Training sessions and group activities
* Mileage and expenses are tax deductible
* Personal ongoing support, supervision to help the group succeed
* Mentee/mentor group activities, complimentary tickets to community events, participant recognition events when available
Application and Screening Process
* Written application
* Driving record check
* Criminal history check: state, child abuse and neglect registry
* Personal interview
* Provide three personal references
* Attend 2.5 hour mentor training with mentor partnership and C2T mentor training