For the second year in a row, the TD Charitable Foundation, the charitable giving arm of TD Bank, America’s Most Convenient Bank®, provided a grant to UrbanPromise Ministries in Camden, New Jersey, to provide training and employment to teens in the StreetLeader program. Their gift of $14,210 will provide 4 jobs in the 2014-2015 year.
An 11th grade participant named Stefany is completing her first year as a StreetLeader. “This year has been amazing,” Stefany paused, “like, the best year of my life!” After several weeks of working as a StreetLeader, Stefany was promoted to the position of Assistant Team Leader. During the winter, she was crowned the first winner of UrbanPromise’s “More Beauty” pageant, a friendly competition designed to instill confidence and to ensure that every girl recognizes her own beauty.
When asked why a program like this is important to teens in Camden, Stefany replied, “There are many stereotypes for teens in Camden; that they’ll be dead by age 21, that they’ll never graduate, that they’ll be drug dealers. Many feel that’s how it’s supposed to be, but the StreetLeader program gives them a chance to be in a safe place, to be out of the street environment, and to see other options for their lives.”
Since its inception in 1994, the StreetLeader program has engaged more than 1400 teens, training and employing them to provide mentoring and educational support to younger children in Camden. Participants also receive mentoring, tutoring, and support with college preparation. As a result, 100% of high school students graduate and 93% go on to college, statistics that are staggering compared to those of the city of Camden, where 62.3% of persons over age 25 have graduated from high school and only 7.2% have attained a bachelor's degree.
Stefany aspires to be a high school teacher in the city of Camden. She would be in good company with other StreetLeader alumni who are committed to their city, including a policewoman who patrols the area around UrbanPromise, an East Camden fireman, an UrbanPromise board member (who owns her own business), and several staff members.
[Picture: Stefany posing with Jacob Rodriguez, Director of the StreetLeader program after winning the “More than Beauty” pageant.]
About UrbanPromise Ministries
UrbanPromise is a non-profit organization dedicated to providing children and youth with the supports they need to succeed academically, grow spiritually, and prepare for leadership that will bring positive change to their communities. This is accomplished through after-school programs, summer camps, job training, 2 schools, experiential learning, and a host of other enrichment activities. To learn more, please visit www.urbanpromiseusa.org.
About the TD Charitable Foundation
The TD Charitable Foundation is the charitable giving arm of TD Bank N.A., which operates as TD Bank, America’s Most Convenient Bank®, and is one of the 10 largest commercial banking organizations in the United States. The Foundation's mission is to serve the individuals, families and businesses in all the communities where TD Bank operates, having made $121.8 million in charitable donations since its inception in 2002. The Foundation’s areas of focus are affordable housing, financial literacy and education, and the environment. More information on the TD Charitable Foundation, including an online grant application, is available at www.TDBank.com.
About TD Bank, America's Most Convenient Bank®
TD Bank, America's Most Convenient Bank, is one of the 10 largest banks in the US, providing more than 8 million customers with a full range of retail, small business and commercial banking products and services at approximately 1300 convenient locations throughout the Northeast, Mid-Atlantic, Metro DC, the Carolinas and Florida. In addition, TD Bank and its subsidiaries offer customized private banking and wealth management services through TD Wealth®, and vehicle financing and dealer commercial services through TD Auto Finance. TD Bank is headquartered in Cherry Hill, NJ. To learn more, visit www.tdbank.com. Find TD Bank on Facebook at www.facebook.com/TDBank and on Twitter at www.twitter.com/TDBank_US.
TD Bank, America's Most Convenient Bank, is a member of TD Bank Group and a subsidiary of The Toronto-Dominion Bank of Toronto, Canada, a top 10 financial services company in North America. The Toronto-Dominion Bank trades on the New York and Toronto stock exchanges under the ticker symbol "TD". To learn more, visit www.td.com.