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To provide educational assistance to young people while helping them to understand the importance of reaching back to help others
The Make A Difference Youth Foundation consist of three major programs: The National PowerUP program, Teens For A New Tomorrow and the National Digital Hero Campaign National PowerUP Program PowerUP is a national program established by General Colin Powell and America's Promise to bring community organizations together with technology corporations to help bridge the digital divide. Hewlett Packard, AOL, Gateway and Cisco Systems are sponsors of PowerUP and provide each PowerUP site with computers, free AOL accounts for the children that participant in the program and Cisco networking equipment. We were one of the first 225 national sites selected. During the month of August 2001 we were named the National PowerUP site of the month and are still kept on their website as a national success story (www.powerup.org). Digital Hero Campaign The Digital Hero Campaign is a national mentoring program sponsored by People Magazine, AOL, the National Mentoring Partnership and the Waitte Family Foundation (www.digitalheros.org). This program matches children between the ages of 12 and 18 with celebrity mentors. The students and their mentors communicate through a special email system setup by AOL. We are one of 15 sites selected nationally to participate in this innovative mentoring program. We currently have 15 students participating in this program and their mentors include: Ann Curry (News Anchor), the presidents of HBO and People Magazine, Russell Simmons from DEF Comedy Jam, Stan Wilson (Creator of special effects for the movie "The Matrix") and many others. Teens For A New Tomorrow This is our high school college bound program. We prepare students starting in the seventh grade for college through career planning, college visits, and college exam preparation classes. Our students also participate in community service projects on a weekly basis to understand the need to always give back to the community. They volunteer at the Greater Food Depository, Open Hand Pantry, and Chicago Department on Aging. The students also tutor and have adopted two parks through the Friends of the Park "Adopt-a-Park Program". Over the past ten years 100% of our high school seniors have graduated from high school and have been accepted to college.
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