Meet Jocelyn from ScriptEd

As she prepares to graduate high school, Jocelyn looks forward to the next stage of her life with confidence and excitement. She will be attending Dickinson College as a POSSE Scholar, and she plans to study computer science. “I now know what it’s like to work at a company as a software developer, and I know that’s what I want.”

Jocelyn was exposed to careers in technology through Catalog member program ScriptEd. She took a coding course offered by ScriptEd at her school, the Young Women’s Leadership Academy of East Harlem. After her first year in the course, Jocelyn signed up for the ScriptEd internship program and spent the summer as an intern at ThoughtWorks, a technology consulting firm. “I got to network with people and get a glimpse of what my future could be like.”

Jocelyn’s second year with ScriptEd exposed her to even more opportunities in the field of software development. She attended advanced classes after-school at a company called Teachers Pay Teachers, where she expanded her coding skills and her network of professional contacts. She also signed up for another summer internship, and is excited to build more transferable skills. “I am really proud of the app I developed [in my internship], because it was the first time I built an app in that language. My managers told me that if I can do what ScriptEd taught me, I can build an app in any new language and use the same concepts and skills.”


Meet David from Breakthrough NY

When David Silva was called in for Catalog for Giving member program Breakthrough NY’s (BTNY) info session as a 6th grader, he thought he was in trouble so didn’t respond to his name being called over the loud speaker. Eventually, a school staff member went to find him and explained that he wasn’t in trouble, so he went to the info session and loved what he heard. He was in a middle school where only some of his classmates were academically minded, so he liked the idea of getting to learn more over the summer and meet other kids who were equally excited about learning.

He believes that he was chosen to join BTNY because of his demeanor, drive, and vulnerability. He was always open about who he is, and was able to share the truth about himself during his interview. For example, he felt comfortable enough to talk about how his parents were splitting up at the time, which was a very sensitive topic and not something every kid would have willingly shared.

David, now a senior in high school, was recently accepted as a POSSE scholar to Babson College. He has always taken advantage of any and every opportunity that has come his way because of BTNY and/or other resources in his life. He has taken the leadership and teamwork skills that he’s learned at BTNY, to create both a swim club and math club at his high school.

On a personal level, he really thrived in the BTNY’s academic summer program, where everyone was engaged and committed to academics. Before, he was a very shy person, and found it difficult to make new friends, but being at BTNY helped him grow. He also learned the value of caring for others (such as celebrating their accomplishments) and the importance of community to one’s success.


Students from Alumni Organization Generation Dazzle at Civics Day!

On Tuesday, May 9th we had the opportunity to serve as judges at another great Civics Day as the students from alumni member organization Generation Citizen, presented their civics projects from their semester long class! The students, taught by volunteer college students who serve as “democracy coaches,” select an issue of importance to their communities, study and coalesce around the root causes of the issue, identify the change-makers they need to engage, and work on tactics to make change happen.

In the picture above middle school students explain their research and outreach to curb racially motivated violence to Catalog friend, Stuart Post, Executive Director of The Meringoff Family Foundation. Other projects we judged included a proposal to reduce bus and subway fares for low income residents, and a program to bridge the serious trust divide between police and high school students. The student presenters were enthusiastic to understand their privilege and obligation to be engaged citizens and to make change happen in their communities.

Since joining The Catalog’s 6th cohort, GC has nearly tripled its number of participants and expanded to three additional cities. We continue to strategize with Founder and Executive Director, Scott Warren and his team and are proud of our early support of this amazing program.


Communication Workshop for 7th Cohort

On Thursday April 27th The Catalog convened a capacity-building workshop for its 7th Cohort Member Organizations.  The workshop was presented by communications consultant Marti Fischer and provided participants with skills to perfect their organization’s elevator pitches and cut through all the noise that non-profit messaging is often lost in.  A key goal of The Catalog is to expand the technical, fundraising, and communications skills of its member programs so that they are better able to survive in the current non-profit climate when they leave the Cohort.  Thanks to the support of The Meringoff Family Foundation The Catalog will provide a number of capacity-building workshops to its member programs this year.


Catalog Receives Grant for Capacity Building

Our 7th Cohort will “graduate” from The Catalog this year and members are continuing to explore how to advance their operational skills and continue to serve more NYC youth. Our workshops for the cohort have covered many issues that are key to emerging nonprofits, but we knew that they were ready for more advanced work. So we were thrilled when Stuart Post, Executive Director of the Meringoff Family Foundation approached us to see how The Catalog could make use of a significant capacity building grant. 
A key component of The Catalog’s philosophy and model of support  is building capacity and providing technical assistance to our grantees, ensuring their success for years to come. In the last few years, The Catalog has broadened these services, hosting workshops in a variety of important fields for emerging nonprofits. Thanks to the support of the Meringoff Family Foundation, we are building on this work by sponsoring a series of workshops with a recognized expert in nonprofit fundraising focusing on concrete steps our organizations can take to advance their fundraising efforts. The grant will further provide individual consulting for our groups that are tackling particular issues. Our thanks go out to Stephen Meringoff and his family for recognizing the critical value of strengthening nonprofits’  operations.

“Access to higher education through outstanding youth development programming is a major focus of the Meringoff Family Foundation, and our support for Catalog for Giving is an extremely cost effective way to further this mission.  Our grant increases the Catalog’s capacity, while also providing hands-on assistance to the 15 youth-serving organizations that comprise Cohort 7.  It is with great satisfaction that I support my NYC real estate colleagues who are working so tirelessly on the Catalog’s behalf.”

Stephen J. Meringoff, President, Meringoff Family Foundation


Our New Website is Live!

We have been busy working on a new website to make it easier for you to get to know The Catalog and our wonderful member programs. It’s still a work in progress, but we think you’ll enjoy the new look. Please check back regularly for updates on our terrific programs, news about the young participants, events at The Catalog and our programs and other news of interest to those who support NYC youth development.


2015 Urban Heroes Awards Benefit to honor Greta Guggenheim

The Catalog is proud to honor Corporate Urban Hero, Greta Guggenheim, Co-Founder and Chief Investment Officer of Ladder Capital, and to celebrate our 15 Young Urban Heroes, a child from each of our partner programs who perseveres in learning new skills to reach for dreams. They hail from all parts of NYC, and have committed themselves to a better future by participating in our wonderful programs that empower the next generation with sports, arts, academics, college readiness, mentoring, alternatives to incarceration and immigrant rights. Our programs are diverse and so are our heroes. Come meet them and celebrate with us on October 13th at The Pierre. Proceeds will be distributed to our member programs. Click here to purchase tickets.