Executive Director Note
Mary Frances Tharp
“Beginnings are exciting. Endings are sad. What happens in between is what matters.” I’m paraphrasing a quote from a Sandra Bullock movie that has resonated with me over the years and seems very relevant as we start this new phase at Boys Hope Girls Hope of Colorado. We begin this school year with 60 scholars all in Academy programming at Regis Jesuit High School and Aurora Central High School. Like all school years, we start with a fresh slate – new backpacks, fresh spiral notebooks waiting to be written in, iPads ready to go, a “grade book” full of hope for excellent grades. There is a flurry of excitement. What will this year hold for each of our scholars? Where will they be at the end of the year? What will happen between now and June? There is lots of hope!
Yet, there is some sadness. We are transitioning out of our Residential program. The Girls Hope house will be on the market next week. We’ve served many, many young people over the years at our Boys Hope or Girls Hope homes. But we can serve more by making this change to Academy programming for all our scholars and collegians. This new beginning gives us the opportunity to go from serving 7 scholars at Regis Jesuit High School this year to 14! We will serve twice as many children this year and change their lives. We just hired our first part-time College Success Coach, Katerina Casas, to help support our 36 collegians. This is the excitement of new beginnings!
Of course, what happens between the kick-off of our newest Academy and next year is what matters. Boys Hope Girls Hope of Colorado will continue to work with 50 Academy scholars at Aurora Central High School. We will continue to prepare all our scholars for college with tutors, mentors, Book Club, Career Panels, College Boot Camp, and all the other pieces that have made our scholars successful. For our Regis Jesuit High School Academy scholars, Boys Hope Girls Hope of Colorado will provide transportation to and from school each day. Ashley Smith, a former Residential Counselor at the Girls Hope home, will make her own transition to a full time Program Manager. She will mainly work at Regis Jesuit High School, where formal programming will happen Monday – Thursday, 3:00-7:30pm and then Saturdays, three times a month, at our new office location. Dinner will be provided as it has in the past by generous families. We will still do our community service work on breaks and no school days. I’m not sure what next summer will look like, but I know we will continue to serve all our scholars throughout the entire year. Our families are overall happy with this transition. There will be some changes and we will support them in new ways. One new support will be sending Food Totes home at least two times a month. We are working hard to make sure the middle is as impactful, supportive and successful as possible.
Thank you for continuing to believe in the work of Boys Hope Girls Hope of Colorado and our scholars, especially as we begin our next chapter! A big shout out to the Regis Jesuit High School community for embracing this transition and making it possible! I know there will be bumps along the way, as much as we plan to avoid them. Please reach out to me if you have questions, concerns, or votes of confidence.
We are excited by our new beginning at Boys Hope Girls Hope of Colorado and look forward with hopefulness to what the middle holds for all of us! Thank you!