Connect to Greatness, Inc.
- Children & Youth
- Education & Literacy
Location225 NW 12th AvenueBoynton Beach, FL 33435 United States
Connect to Greatness, Inc. is a 501c3 organization formed specifically to expose alternative and promising programming options to African-American/Black boys to discover their greatness and set new expectations for themselves and their future. Our goal is to promote and nurture a shift in their thinking about themselves, their behaviors, attitudes and relationships. The organization focuses on middle school (6th grade) boys in South Palm Beach County. Our mission is to ignite the curiosity and creativity of African-American/Black boys and empower them to re-imagine their lives personally, socially and academically with an innovative mindset. The Connect to Greatness, Inc. Boys to Men Leadership Academy is a once a week, 90-minute self-discovery session for 15-weeks. The boys enter as 6th graders and remain in the program until they graduate 8th grade. Upon entry into the program, the participants are considered trailblazers and graduate as change makers.
Trailblazers: Upon entry into the program, all participants are considered trailblazers as they begin their self-discovery journey learning about social responsibility, their culture and leadership. The learning experience for the cohort will include direct-instruction, collaboration, practice-hands-on experiences, and reflection. This is to ensure meaningful and relevant learning experiences are taking place.
Trailblazers 2.0: The first cohort will serve as peer-leaders to the incoming cohort. This year will include more community connections including learning the how-to of fundraising, field trips to key community organizations and with community leaders where the participants will be able to apply the fundamentals of leadership. The goal of these experiences is to continue to build their confidence to establish healthy relationships, speak publicly, and advocate for themselves. This will also expose them to a variety of professional and personal opportunities that may potentially spark an interest never considered before. In addition, they will participant in service learning/community service projects.
Change Makers: This year, the participants will be applying the fundamentals of leaderships, self/cultural awareness, and social responsibility as mentors. They will now begin to reach back to support the 6th and 7th grade participants to be successful in accomplishing their goals, learning their fundamentals, and eventually becoming a "changemaker" themselves.
As mentors, the 8th grade cohort will begin to model what they have seen and learned along the way from the Connect to Greatness Coaches. They will be able to apply and reflect on their own experience as a "Trailblazer" and support their peers accordingly. This experience will highlight the value of supporting another African-American male and empower the boys as leaders.
The Connect to Greatness Boys to Men Leadership Academy will provide a "village" approach in our program. This means that as a group, all participants will have access to a cohort of African-American men at their disposal for support, guidance, and leadership. We will engage African-American males from the community as "coaches". We are intentionally using the terminology of "coaches" instead of mentor. We believe that "coach" resonates with the communities we serve more than mentor. In addition, the essence of a coach is to teach the "fundamentals". Our coaches are the key to unlocking the greatness within our young boys.
We know that mentoring is extremely important and valuable in establishing and building one-on-one relationships with young boys. In addition, to building those relationships, we will focus on empowering our boys to do the "inside out" work of understanding who they are through self-discovery learning sessions. The Connect to Greatness Coaches role is to be a positive male figure for young boys and be genuinely motivated to be a guide and support as they are making the journey toward high school. Connect to Greatness Coaches will not be perfect men, but they will be men who are committed to being present and willing to "show up" for our boys.