Wayfinder Schools - March 23, 2017

 
West Bay Rotary
March 23, 2017
 
Martha Kempe, Director of Passages Program
Wayfinder Schools
 
Wayfinder School has a long history here in Camden.
1973 Community School was started to address the needs of students who were dropping out of high school.
The Community School helped students find work while completing their diplomas
 
Opportunity Farm – for young boys with precarious living situations.  Students lived/worked on the farm and went to school.
 
2011 – Opportunity Farm and the Community School merged – now they can serve more students.  There are 65 students in the Passages program.
 
The Residential program is for boys and girls who have already dropped out of school or at risk of dropping out.  We try to help these students finish high school to be able to become a productive member of the community.
 
Passages – started in the 90’s when a student became pregnant.  She couldn’t stay in the residential program – had to figure out another option.
 
Barriers to success for teen parents: child care – transportation and housing
Needed to come up with a way to break down those barriers.
 
We provide those students with tools including technology, transportation and child care.
Hopes that this breaks the cycle.  Diplomas help the students to become more engaged. 
 
Teen pregnancy rate in Maine – 4th lowest in the nation. 
 
When she interviews a student – they want to be good parents, they want to be there for their children. 
 
The organization is eligible to receive public school funding – but it doesn’t cover the costs
When you have a teen mom, she doesn’t drive, doesn’t have control over her healthcare, in some school districts a teen can’t do adult ed.  More barriers.
 
Q&A
How do you deal with emotional issues how do you deal?
Students have to want to be there.  When they are interviewed, they usually have had gaps in their education.  Many have said that they have been bullied – some don’t have resources for self-care.  These folks have self-diagnosed with anxiety, addiction, depression.  The birth of a baby helps to reengage the students in life. School can be a very unwelcoming place – sometimes schools don’t want them there.
 
Students join passages from 14-20
68% of those students will graduate by age 20
We talk about home safety & budgeting
 
What other services are available to them? Can they get WIC, etc?
One of the roles of the teachers is to learn about the agencies in the community so that they know what resources are available to these students.  Many students have access to ASPIRE – helps a little bit with books or drivers ed – sometimes.
 
When they see a student who is really struggling – one student had a trailer that she and her boyfriend were fixing up.  DHSS told them it wasn’t safe for them to live in it.  Trying to get them hooked up with social services.
 
Bay Chamber collaboration – Carnegie Hall Lullaby Project – Students get to work with professional musicians to create a lullaby for their child and it is professionally recorded.  The 4th year of this program.
 
Buckets on the table for PAWS
 
Community Service – Habitat for Humanity project on 3/25.  Indoor painting project.  8:30a – Molyneaux Road.
 
eWaste – no paint recycling this year.  Maybe next year.
 
Duck Derby – We need more prizes that went out to the committee - doesn’t have to be only inside of the club.  We have Florida trip, jewelry and car detail.
 
Save the Date
Wednesday, May 17 - evening
Ebantide
Duck Derby Cocktail party
 
Paul Harris awards – Paul Harris award to Jim Potter.
 
Survey – please complete the survey – we just need feedback.
We need ideas for fresh new fundraisers. 
 
Board Meetings
First Wednesday of every month.
 
April 5 meeting moved to April 12.
Club Assembly – April 27 – see Peter if you want specific materials covered on Club Assembly.\
 
Next Week – Maine Share