ABC Update – 17 September 2019
ABC Wilton has just completed its 23rd year successfully transforming the lives of high school students from under served communities. We have nine students in our program and we are only one of three community programs in the country that services boys and girls. Wilton, as a community of individual supporters, has committed to providing the environment for an excellent high school education and providing exposure to life skills that support their chances for success. We have many volunteers that provide tutoring, counseling, transportation, college advisors, college advocates and so many others that help keep the ABC mission vibrant. The host families provide a second home and family to embrace these students. We have resident directors and a cook for both houses. A family foundation has provided funding to permit our students one trip abroad to experience Education in International Learning (EIL). We have over 75 volunteers. All these factors provide forums for life lessons that improve their chances for success in the future. The impact is significant, visit our website abcwilton.org.
We have four graduated seniors, two girls and two boys, and all are heading off to college this fall. Yanny is going to the University of New Haven to develop a career in criminal justice and HomeLand Security Services. It has one of the best programs in the country for this type of profession. Bianca will be attending Stonybrook University and is focused on studying Law. During her senior year she completed an internship with the Common Fund in their legal department. Emanuel is going to the University of Rhode Island to study marine biology and environmental studies. This summer he is interning at Google in NYC to learn coding. Alex will be attending Manhattanville College and will be studying forensics and criminal justice. ABC Wilton provides volunteers to assist each student in their college efforts by taking them for college visits, guiding them through college essays, helping with all the financial scholarships/funding and providing subsequent advocacy to support them during their freshman year in college.
Our other students are doing academically very well and have exciting summer plans: Josh is doing a cultural exchange through EIL in India, Hector is studying forensics at Manhattanville College, Kiri and Isabelle are both attending University of Florida for a three week term (one for veterinary medicine and one for psychology), Nadia will be exploring Thailand for one month. Unfortunately we had to dismiss a student in late spring. However, all his academic work was completed and he was allowed to finish the sophomore year.
Great news, JP Clarke , who came to ABC from Harlem NY, WHS class of 2014, went to college at Notre Dame graduated with a degree in aerospace engineering is back in Wilton working at ASML and is joining our program as a volunteer managing our website.
ABC Wilton receives no funding from ABC National and all our working capital is raised by our community efforts. Fundraising has been challenged recently as a result of tax law changes, demographic shifts in the population, and softness in the high end real estate market. It takes the working capital that you provide to keep the lights on, the houses maintained, the computers upgraded, books provided and so many other expenses that influence our success.
As we begin our 24th year for Wilton’s A Better Chance Program we are pleased to welcome four new scholars. Our ABC students are entering as ninth graders and coming from a different environment. They are eager to reach out and make new friends so we encourage everyone in our community to welcome them.