Calendar Announcement/Save the Date: The Immokalee Foundation 2017 Charity Classic Pro-Am and Pairings Party

WHAT:
The Immokalee Foundation’s 2017 Charity Classic Pro-Am will be held Monday, Nov. 13, at Bay Colony Golf Club. The low-net score golf tournament will pair more than two dozen of the world’s greatest golfers with Naples’ most philanthropic players.

Each amateur foursome will be paired with a different professional player for the first and second nine holes during an exclusive pairings party at The Old Collier Golf Club Sunday, Nov. 12.

WHO:
The Immokalee Foundation provides a range of education programs that focus on building pathways to success through college and post-secondary preparation and support, mentoring and tutoring, opportunities for broadening experiences, and life skills development leading to economic independence.

Chairing the event for the seventh year is Kevin Johnson of Morgan Stanley Private Wealth Management, along with Sunny Sapiente of Bay Colony Golf Club.

WHEN:
Monday, Nov. 13, 2017
7:30 a.m. breakfast and golf demonstrations
9 a.m. shotgun start
Lunch and awards presentation immediately following the tournament

WHERE:
Bay Colony Golf Club
9740 Bent Grass Bend, Naples

TICKETS:
Entry fees begin at $5,000.

INFO:
The Immokalee Foundation, 239-430-9122, info@immokaleefoundation.org, www.immokaleefoundation.org

The Immokalee Foundation students enjoy a sweet experience with Norman Love

Students from The Immokalee Foundation recently toured Norman Love Confections and Artisan Gelato by Norman Love in Fort Myers, with the founder himself leading the visit.

Master Chocolatier Norman Love shared personal stories with the students, along with several secrets to his success; he also revealed a few special techniques used to create his world-renowned chocolates.

Love led 22 foundation students through the chocolate salon, kitchens, packaging and warehouse areas. He explained the process of making exquisitely crafted chocolates, desserts, crepes, pastries and holiday specialties. After offering the students samples of his confections, Love surprised them with handmade authentic Italian artisan gelato.

“Mr. Love shared his history and culinary experiences with us, which was really interesting,” said Jennifer Villa, who is currently dual-enrolled at Immokalee High School and in iTECH’s Culinary Arts program and will be attending Keiser University Center for Culinary Arts in Tallahassee. “I couldn’t believe he invited me back to be a pastry chef in training for an entire day. That will be another experience I will never forget.”

Norman Love Confections has Chocolate Salons in Fort Myers, Estero and Naples in Southwest Florida, as well as Artisan Gelato in Fort Myers. The chocolatier creates and distributes handcrafted artisanal chocolates from its Fort Myers corporate headquarters that encompasses both production and retail operations. For more information, visit www.normanloveconfections.com.

The Immokalee Foundation provides a range of education programs that focus on building pathways to success through college and post-secondary preparation and support, mentoring and tutoring, opportunities for broadening experiences, and life skills development leading to economic independence. To learn more about The Immokalee Foundation, volunteering as a career panel speaker or host, becoming a mentor, making a donation, including the foundation in your estate plans, or for additional information, call 239-430-9122 or visit www.immokaleefoundation.org.

 

The Immokalee Foundation’s students at Norman Love Confections

The Immokalee Foundation’s students at Norman Love Confections

Norman Love with The Immokalee Foundation’s students at Artisan Gelato by Norman Love

Norman Love with The Immokalee Foundation’s students at Artisan Gelato by Norman Love

Norman Love, Jennifer Villa

Norman Love, Jennifer Villa

NLC packaging and warehouse

NLC packaging and warehouse

NLC team member describes confections

NLC team member describes confections

The Immokalee Foundation middle school students spend spring break in Washington, D.C.

Middle school students enrolled in The Immokalee Foundation’s Junior Career Development Program spent their spring break traveling away from the beaches, sunshine and leisure of Florida to snow, large buildings and learning – and they loved it. The mid-March trip to Washington, D.C., was a “once-in-a-lifetime opportunity” to Alondra Estrada. Ivette Varella called it “a dream come true.”

Ten Immokalee Foundation students visited the White House; U.S. Capitol; Smithsonian Institution museums; Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln and Martin Luther King Jr. memorials; United States Holocaust Memorial Museum; war and military memorials; Arlington National Cemetery; and Mount Vernon.

This is an annual experience for young teens in The Immokalee Foundation’s program, but for the first time, students also were able to see the original copies of the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence at the National Archives.

Along with her classmates, Cenaida Herrera was very impressed. On a web page created for the students to submit their memories, she wrote, “They were the authentic (documents), and it was so cool to see how they preserved the original paper and the writing of the documents.”

Students spent long days taking in new experiences.

“We also learned about temperatures below 50 degrees!” Daniel Trejo-Garcia wrote on the site.

Abraham Salazar not only enjoyed the Lincoln Memorial because he was able to see in person the iconic image of the 16th president in his chair, but also because he and the honored man share the same first name. “Also, the quote at the top of the monument inspired me,” Salazar wrote. “All of this would not be possible without The Immokalee Foundation.”

“One of my favorite things I did during this trip was seeing the White House,” wrote Dalila Gonzalez. “It was great that I finally got to see it in person and not in textbooks or in a picture. The people I got to spend time with and the sights were unbelievable. I think everyone should know how great The Immokalee Foundation is for making this trip so amazing!”

The Immokalee Foundation provides a range of education programs that focus on building pathways to success through college and post-secondary preparation and support, mentoring and tutoring, opportunities for broadening experiences, and life skills development leading to economic independence. To learn more about The Immokalee Foundation, volunteering as a career panel speaker or host, becoming a mentor, making a donation, including the foundation in your estate plans, or for additional information, call 239-430-9122 or visit www.immokaleefoundation.org.

 

The Immokalee Foundation group at the White House

The Immokalee Foundation group at the White House

The Immokalee Foundation group at The Capitol

The Immokalee Foundation group at The Capitol

Leslie Escalante, Cenaida Herrera

Leslie Escalante, Cenaida Herrera

Elmer Santaigo

Elmer Santaigo

Daniel Trejo-Garcia

Daniel Trejo-Garcia

Cenaida Herrera, Leslie Escalante, Jaelyn Sanders

Cenaida Herrera, Leslie Escalante, Jaelyn Sanders

The Immokalee Foundation inducts 36 new students into scholarship program

36 Immokalee students inducted into The Immokalee Foundation’s Take Stock in Children program

36 Immokalee students inducted into The Immokalee Foundation’s Take Stock in Children program

Thirty-six students pledged to regularly attend all of their classes, maintain a minimum 2.5 GPA, and be positive role models to other students in school as the newest inductees in The Immokalee Foundation’s Take Stock in Children program.

In addition, the seventh- through 11th-grade students pledged to meet with their mentors regularly, remain drug and crime free, volunteer in their community, and attend all required Take Stock in Children workshops and events.

During the March 9 ceremony at Ave Maria University, the new inductees joined hundreds of students from Immokalee who – during the foundation’s 25 years – have met their commitments and been offered scholarships to Florida colleges or universities upon high school graduation.

Inductees also were joined by parents, siblings, friends, mentors, board members and The Immokalee Foundation staff for dinner. While they dined, a slide show featured photos of each student.

Among those watching for his photo to come around was eighth-grader Israel Briones Jr., whose parents saw him cross the stage and pick up the certificate he earned as an Immokalee Foundation Take Stock in Children student. Briones already has an idea that he’d like to become an engineer, having been on a field trip to a local university where he learned about the study of engineering with his Immokalee Middle School class.

But should he change his mind, Briones will be able to explore additional career options through The Immokalee Foundation’s community partners in its Career Development program – just one new educational avenue he will have as a Take Stock student.

Student speaker Ulna Beaubrum talked about other benefits of being chosen for the program. “Being accepted into Take Stock in Children provided me with hope that college was a possibility,” she said. “My biggest blessing from The Immokalee Foundation came when my student advocate encouraged me to apply to Florida State University’s summer medical program. I applied with little faith that a small girl like me from a small town would be selected. Due to my faith and the faith my advocate had in me, I was indeed selected.”

She continued down that path until she came face to face with her future. “I will graduate in May and attend Florida State University to major in biology and become a pediatrician,” Beaubrum said.

Mentor Joseph Sciortino spoke about the rewards of mentorship and passed along appreciative comments he had heard from Take Stock mentees. “My mentor has been interested in my well-being as well as my academic success,” said one. “My mentor believes in me even when I don’t believe in myself,” said another.

Parent Tavis Rios expressed his appreciation for having four children selected as Take Stock in Children recipients.

The Immokalee Foundation Board Chair Joyce Hagen said, “Students, you would not be here without this family support that surrounds you tonight. Your family believes in you. And now, you believe in yourself. And we believe in you, too.”

Hagen finished with a promise: “Our staff will do everything in their power to position you for a brilliant future.”

The Immokalee Foundation provides a range of education programs that focus on building pathways to success through college and post-secondary preparation and support, mentoring and tutoring, opportunities for broadening experiences, and life skills development leading to economic independence. To learn more about The Immokalee Foundation, volunteering as a career panel speaker or host, becoming a mentor, making a donation, including the foundation in your estate plans, or for additional information, call 239-430-9122 or visit www.immokaleefoundation.org.

 

Mackenson Yrelus

Mackenson Yrelus

Ulna Beaubrum

Ulna Beaubrum

Hector Trejo, Martin and Daniel Trejo-Garcia, Flora Garcia

Hector Trejo, Martin and Daniel Trejo-Garcia, Flora Garcia

Yuridia Zaragoza

Yuridia Zaragoza

Mentors and mentees meet for movie and bowling days

A group of nearly 100 mentors and their mentees from The Immokalee Foundation marked Martin Luther King Jr. Day in January by attending the foundation’s traditional Mentor-Mentee Movie Day. A few weeks later, pairs had another opportunity to meet, this time enjoying lunch and bowling together.

The group met on MLK Day at California Pizza Kitchen, followed by an afternoon screening of “Hidden Figures,” the Oscar-nominated true story about a group of African-American women at NASA in the early years of the space program who – while facing racism and sexism – became instrumental in the operations that sent John Glenn into orbit.

“Hidden Figures couldn’t have been a better choice this year,” said mentor Janice Backlund. “The exposure to strong women of color and the struggles they endured and overcame meant so much to all of us. And on MLK Day – it couldn’t have been more perfect.”

Mentor Hans Heinsen agreed. “The movie provided a great opportunity for our mentees to see how perseverance can overcome obstacles in society,” he said.

The events also were opportunities for mentors and mentees to relax and have fun. “These are the times to be more yourself and personable,” said mentor Joseph Sciortino, who – like all mentors with The Immokalee Foundation – devotes an hour each week during the school year to meet with his mentee, Osbaldo Vasquez, in Immokalee.

More recently, mentors and mentees met at IL Primo Pizza & Wings for lunch and ventured to HeadPinz for two hours of bowling.

Among them were Debbie Devita and her mentee, Litzy Rojas. “I love being able to give back to a young person and also just to become a part of their life and help any way I can,” said Devita.

Clearly, these relationships are meaningful on both sides. “My mentor has encouraged me to further my education and to keep striving to accomplish my goals,” said Lessett Perez of mentor Teddy Sitter. “Most importantly, she is one of my greatest friends.”

The Immokalee Foundation provides a range of education programs that focus on building pathways to success through college and post-secondary preparation and support, mentoring and tutoring, opportunities for broadening experiences, and life skills development leading to economic independence. To learn more about The Immokalee Foundation, volunteering as a career panel speaker or host, becoming a mentor, making a donation, including the foundation in your estate plans, or for additional information, call 239-430-9122 or visit www.immokaleefoundation.org.

Debbie DeVita, Litzy Rojas

Debbie DeVita, Litzy Rojas

 

Audrey Appleby, Maria Espinoza

Audrey Appleby, Maria Espinoza

 

Teddy Sitter, Lesseett Perez

Teddy Sitter, Lesseett Perez

 

Daniel Hernandez, Loudjina Louis, Bryan Reyes, Andres Estrada

Daniel Hernandez, Loudjina Louis, Bryan Reyes, Andres Estrada

 

Arthur Goldstein, Mark Trejo, Rafael Rodriguez, Dick Rothwell

Arthur Goldstein, Mark Trejo, Rafael Rodriguez, Dick Rothwell

 

Julissa Montalvo, Dorothy Campbell, Crystal Moreno

Julissa Montalvo, Dorothy Campbell, Crystal Moreno

 

Dominique Rios, Jackelyn Banda-Soto, Jan Backlund

Dominique Rios, Jackelyn Banda-Soto, Jan Backlund