MMP is fortunate to have many partners and funders that make it possible for us to do our work. Here is a sampling of some of our partnership highlights from 2015. For a more complete list of our partners and funders, please visit our full site.
The Boston Red Sox donated 1,000 tickets to allow mentors and mentees to attend our annual Mentoring Night at Fenway game. Selected matches were also able to participate in on field activities before the game, including throwing out the first pitch and acting as honorary bat kids.
We were excited to join with our partners at First Niagara to announce their regional $1 million Mentoring Matters grants at the Morgan School in Holyoke. First Niagara CEO Gary Crosby was on hand to announce the grant and Mass Mentoring was awarded $50,000 to support our work in Western Massachusetts. First Niagara’s support also helped fund the creation of a video that highlights the impact of mentoring in Hampden County, one of our targeted communities.
Generous support from Bank of America included a $75,000 grant to help fund our work and raise awareness of the impact of empowering youth-adult relationships. They were a sponsor of our Champions of Mentoring event and presenting sponsor for our Northeast Conference on Youth Development and Mentoring. Bank of America also supported the research for our Mass Mentoring Counts survey of mentoring and youth development organizations and hosted our event in Boston to present the survey data.
2015 marked the first full year of the Mayor’s Mentoring Movement, our partnership with Boston Mayor Marty Walsh to recruit 1,000 new mentors to serve Boston youth. We worked with our network of programs to place hundreds of new mentors, bringing us more than halfway to the goal in the first year. Our efforts were enhanced by a grant from the Mass Service Alliance that allowed us to create a public awareness campaign that ran on the MBTA, social media and in the Boston Herald. MMP was also a key player in other aspects of Boston's My Brother's Keeper efforts to help break down barriers to success for young people of color.
The Kelly Family Foundation supported our work with a $75,000 grant, including $25,000 specifically to help us create more youth-adult relationships on Cape Cod, one of our four targeted communities.
For the first time, we held our annual Corporate Mentoring Summit in Springfield to highlight the tremendous work that is happening in Western Massachusetts to support youth-adult relationships. Springfield Mayor Dominic Sarno and Delcie Bean, CEO of Paragus Strategic I.T., offered remarks about the importance and impact of mentoring in the region. We added eight new businesses to our Corporate Mentoring Honor Roll, recognizing them for the many ways they contributed to mentoring. We also presented the Ignite Award to First Niagara -- who was also presenting sponsor for the event -- for their tremendous support of MMP and our program partners.
Thanks to a grant from the Massachusetts Department of Higher Education, we worked with high school males from the Springfield Public Schools as part of the 100 Males To College program. The initiative was launched in 2015 to increase college access, enrollment, retention, and success for low-income males and males of color. MMP participated in a session at Westfield State University to train these high school students on how to develop relationships to help foster college success.