Students present over $25,000 in United Way grants to local nonprofits

Students in United Way of Tompkins County's Youth and Philanthropy program awarded grants totaling to $25,000 to 10 local nonprofits Thursday. The program taught 20 Tompkins County students about leadership, philanthropy, nonprofits and budgeting.

Spotlight On... Golden Opportunity

Non-profit organizations are plentiful throughout Tompkins County, and make a big impact in our communities. Despite their contributions, area non-profits can sometimes go unnoticed or unknown. This week we are highlighting Golden Opportunity, a tutoring and mentorship non-profit based in Ithaca. To learn more about the organization, we interviewed its executive director, Kolby Harrell.

A Golden Opportunity for struggling kids

Like our drought-damaged gardens and trees that will require lots of extra attention next spring, many Ithaca children have started school with great disadvantages. While their ability to thrive lies within, conditions in their young lives often don’t support their academic growth. That’s where Golden Opportunity (GO), a tutoring program for struggling children, comes in to fill a gap that the school district cannot.

Morning Newswatch | WHCU Radio

Golden Opportunity's founder, Marty Kaminsky, sits down with Lee Rayburn of Morning Newswatch to look back at how it all began and how GO has made a real difference in local students' lives. 

This interview originally aired on WHCU radio (95.9fm/870am) on January 29, 2016. You can access the original interview online here

Afterschool Programs That Get It Right: Golden Opportunity

The organization was founded with a mission to provide low-income students with the kind of in-depth, individualized attention and advocacy they require to empower them in every aspect of their lives. Tutors and students often form tight bonds, with tutors often volunteering outside of the program to attend student performances and parent-teacher meetings when the parent cannot, so that the student always have a consistent advocate.

Community Connections: Marty Kaminsky — Honoring his Father

In August 2005, Marty’s father passed away. To honor him, Marty approached the principals of the two schools in which he had served. Marty offered them a stipend to pay for two children in each of their schools to have tutoring for one year. He promised the two principals that he would use that school year to develop a tutoring program. When the one-year mark arrived, Marty returned to the two schools. He asked if the tutoring made a difference, and the answer was a resounding “yes.”