At Gotta Have Sole we provide homeless youth with new shoes to call their own. As part of our goals to reach more children in need across the country we’re launching our new College Ambassador program. College Ambassadors will work with local shelters to bring programming focused on additional social and development skills for homeless youth. The in-shelter programs will provide additional support to accompany the gift of new shoes to continue to build confidence, academic skills, and social skills. At the same time, while volunteering the College Ambassadors will have the opportunity to learn from experiences of others, while developing leadership and program development skills.
Why this approach: A new pair of shoes allows a child to go to school, but if we can also deliver a new set of social skills, that child will have more opportunity to succeed in school. Many homeless children struggle with life skills and coping mechanisms due to their experience with homelessness, which in turn, can lead to more challenges at school. Through the ambassador program our goal is to provide additional tools for these children in order to succeed socially at school, and have additional opportunities for success.
WHAT IT MEANS TO BE AN AMBASSADOR
As an ambassador, you will go to your local homeless shelter and work with the children for about an hour. During this hour you will be a peer-leader, build relationships with young people at the shelter, and lead various activities focused on social skill building.
Over the course of 7 weeks (including a kick off week of training) you’ll be expected to commit 3 hours each week. This includes 2 hours of programming at the shelter and approximately ½ hour for travel to/from your college or university to the shelter.
The time will depend on the shelter’s needs, but will most often be from 3:30pm-6:00pm
All participants will share their experience through a simple report back form, to be completed at the end of the program.