If you follow All Those Things I Love.com on Facebook you may have noticed I posted a few (!) pictures of actor, Matthew McConaughey last week. That’s because I was beyond excited to be invited to participate in P&G’s “School the Nation” kickoff hosted by Mr. McConaughey, himself! P&G GIVE Education is dedicated to raising awareness and funds for CIS (Communities in Schools) the nation’s leading dropout prevention organization. Last year, GIVE Education raised more than $500,000 for CIS.
Did you know that every 26 seconds a student drops out of high school in the United States?
More than 1.2 million students drop out each year – one every 26 seconds. One-third of high school students, including half of all minority students, fail to graduate in time. If the graduation rates and college matriculation of male students (alone) increased by just five percent, it could lead to combined savings and revenue of almost $8 billion each year by reducing crime-related costs.
CIS uses the P&G GIVE Education funding to work with at-risk kids through their network of thousands of mentors across the country. CIS believe its people, not programs that make the biggest impact in guiding students on the path to success. With the support of GIVE Education, CIS mentors play a critical role in determining the lifetime success of the at-risk child – through continued support and encouragement.
The statistics are eye-opening.
•Nearly two-thirds (63%) of Americans had a person who served as a mentor while growing up, who guided and inspired them to make positive life changes.
• Two-thirds (66%) of those who had a mentor earn more than $75K annually, with all agreeing their mentor played a big role in shaping who they are today.
• The majority (59%) of Americans who did not have mentor do not have a college degree.
• Nearly half (44%) of those who did not have a mentor while growing up earn $25K or less annually.
How can you get involved?
• The simplest way is through the P&G Buy, Give and Get Rebate Program. By purchasing $25 worth of select P&G products, not only will you receive a $5 rebate by mail, but P&G will also give $5 to CIS on your behalf.
• On August 26th, look for the P&G brandSAVER insert in the Sunday paper. For each coupon redeemed from the August 26 brandSAVER insert, P&G will donate $0.02 to CIS – not only will you save money, you’re giving back!
• Head over to the P&G myGIVE Facebook page and “like” them and a $1 donation will be made to CIS (up to $10,000).
• The P&G uncapped donation will help deliver human, financial and community resources to students and their families, including tutoring, mentoring, individual or family counseling, health services, food bank access, college visits and more.
So how is Matthew McConaughey involved?
Matthew’s foundation, j.k. livin’ is also dedicated to improving the future of kids. The just keep livin’ foundation runs after-school fitness and wellness programs in large inner city high schools. There, students are encouraged to improve their physical and mental health through exercise, teamwork, gratitude, community service and positive life choices. These programs help at-risk kids become confident, have a better attitude, self-reliance and hope for a great future.
During the event at Venice High School, we were invited to participate in a typical j.k. livin’ after-school session. It included warm up stretches and cardio exercises. We learned more about the programs from Karen Schlosser, Assistant Director of U.S. Operations at P&G and Mike Bento – Executive Vice President for Marketing and Communications - Communities In Schools (CIS).
Matthew McConaughey was the final speaker and he spoke about his motivation to start his foundation and what it’s meant to him to see the improvement in the students in the program. (He positively glowed when talking about the students achievements.) He chose the name for the foundation in remembrance of his father, whose image is incorporated in the logo. Currently, j.k. livin’ has 1500 students enrolled in 14 different schools in California, Texas and Louisiana. The foundation’s focus is fitness, well-being, gratitude, and community service. We ended the program by forming a “Gratitude Circle”. It’s a simple concept, but so touching. Each person, in turn, tells the group what they are grateful for. Very emotional and inspiring.
I am grateful for the opportunity to share this experience with you. I hope you’ll join School the Nation by “liking” the P&G Give Education Facebook page, redeeming coupons from the August 26 Brand saver insert and rebates, and showing support for Communities in Schools.
— For more information on how to become a CIS mentor visit Communities in Schools
— To learn more about j.k. livin’ visit j.k. livin foundation
— Information regarding the P&G Get, Give, Save rebate can be found here
I would sincerely like to thank She Speaks, P&G Give Education, j.k. livin’, and Communities in Schools for this opportunity. I was not compensated for this post; however I was provided travel to and from the event courtesy of She Speaks…and a keepsake photo from an unforgettable day!