On January 23rd our guest speaker was Verna Wright from Daisie Bridgewater Hope Center. The center was founded in 2001 by Ms. Wright, daughter of Daisie Bridgewater for whom it is named. The center serves 100 children grades K-12 in its after-school daycare program. Children are referred by IRC School District and IRC Head Start Program.
It offers a safe and nurturing environment with 7 key goals:
- Provide safe comfortable and stimulating environment conducive for learning and healthy social interaction
- To have all the children seek and achieve their potential
- Expose the students to a broad array of career opportunities so they may begin to envision their futures
- Help the children pass the Florida Standards Assessments (FSAs) each year
- Help and encourage all students to graduate high school
- Have at least 50% of the centers high school graduates enter college or a vocational program following high school graduation
- Provide scholarship support to children admitted to college
The children arrive at the center and begin their homework assignments with the supervision of a staff teacher or volunteer counselor. If needed, special tutoring is provided. Each child receives a hot meal before leaving the facility. Afterward they can learn teamwork by honing their supervised basketball and tennis skills at the outdoor facility. There is also a playground facility for the younger children with challenging play stations.
The iWonder STEM (Science Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) Lab gives the students the opportunity to work with computers and microscopes to gain an appreciation for technology and life sciences. A certificate of completion of the coursework provides the recipient with employment opportunities.
There is a 7-week summer camp for up to 75 kids which is held at the facility. The fee is $50 per week. Financial assistance is available to families who apply.
For more information contact the center at 772-589-3535 or visit www.daisiehope.org.
Exchange Club Newsletter