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Guardian Scholars Mentors

Guardian Scholars mentor Valerie Wentworth, left, with Cal State San Marcos senior Sandra Ramirez at Valerie's Scripps Ranch home in February. They made homemade pizza that afternoon to celebrate Ramirez's 24th birthday.
Guardian Scholars mentor Valerie Wentworth, left, with Cal State San Marcos senior Sandra Ramirez at Valerie’s Scripps Ranch home in February. They made homemade pizza that afternoon to celebrate Ramirez’s 24th birthday. — Bill Wechter/U-T San Diego

Guardians help foster youth achieve college dreams

Mentors offer guidance, friendship to former foster children in college

By Pam Kragen.       March 10, 2014

SAN MARCOS — Sandra Ramirez knows all too well that the deck is stacked against former foster children who dream of going to college.

The 24-year-old senior at Cal State San Marcos is a rare success story in the foster care community, where less than 10 percent of former foster youth enroll in college and just 3 percent graduate.

Her brains and determination can be credited for her achievements, but she has another ace in the hole — Promises2Kids’ Guardian Scholars program, which provides scholarships, one-on-one mentoring and networking opportunities for young adults after they leave the safety net of the foster care system.

Ramirez is the oldest of six siblings who entered the foster care system 14 years ago. So far, she’s the only one to go to college.

She lived happily with a foster family in Ramona from ages 12 to 17, but when foster children turn 18, the monthly stipend provided by the county for their care ends. Ramirez didn’t want to be a burden to her foster parents, so when she graduated from high school, she moved out.

“It was very hard when […]

By |March 15th, 2014|Newsroom|Comments Off on Guardian Scholars Mentors

Separated siblings reconnect at camp

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SAN DIEGO — About 100 foster children went to camp in Julian Thursday morning to reconnect with their siblings, according to the county of San Diego.

The campers for one reason or another were unable to be placed in the same foster home as their brothers or sisters. The county, which runs the foster system, says it tries to keep siblings together, but can’t always do so.

“I’m personally the father of five adopted foster kids, and to see the smiles on these kids faces and the excitement that they’re going through, to really spend time at summer camp — I remember when I used to get to go to summer camp when I was a lot younger and all the great activities,” said Supervisor Dave Roberts at a send-off event in Kearny Mesa.

Greg Cox, the chairman of the Board of Supervisors, also attended the send-off.

The county said the campers will strengthen family bonds over four days by rock wall climbing, swimming, hiking, archery, scrapbooking, horseback riding, a talent show and dancing.

Camp Connect is funded by a partnership of the county Health and Human Services Agency, the nonprofit Promises2Kids and the Rivers of Hope Foundation – – the charity of Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers and his wife, Tiffany.

By |August 3rd, 2013|Newsroom|Comments Off on Separated siblings reconnect at camp

Foster siblings reconnect for camping retreat

San Diego, California News Station – KFMB Channel 8 – cbs8.com

SAN DIEGO (CNS) – About 100 foster youth went to camp in Julian Thursday morning to reconnect with their siblings, according to the county of San Diego.

The campers for one reason or another were unable to be placed in the same foster home as their brothers or sisters. The county, which runs the foster system, says it tries to keep siblings together, but can’t always do so.

“I’m personally the father of five adopted foster kids, and to see the smiles on these kids faces and the excitement that they’re going through, to really spend time at summer camp — I remember when I used to get to go to summer camp when I was a lot younger and all the great activities,” said Supervisor Dave Roberts at a send-off event in Kearny Mesa.

Greg Cox, the chairman of the Board of Supervisors, also attended the send-off.

The county said the campers will strengthen family bonds over four days by rock wall climbing, swimming, hiking, archery, scrapbooking, horseback riding, a talent show and dancing.

Camp Connect is funded by a partnership of the county Health and Human Services Agency, the nonprofit Promises2Kids and the Rivers of Hope Foundation — the charity of Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers and his wife, Tiffany.

By |August 3rd, 2013|Newsroom|Comments Off on Foster siblings reconnect for camping retreat

Helping Kids… Promises2Kids Gala

6/28/2013 – UT SAN DIEGO – Appearing on the rock music scene in 1971, REO Speedwagon rapidly rose in popularity. The band, which has sold more than 40 million albums to date, performed a private concert recently in La Jolla.

It was a fundraiser for Promises2Kids (formerly the Child Abuse Prevention Foundation). P2K serves over 5,000 San Diego County children each year through such inspiring programs as Guardian Scholars, Camp Connect and the Polinsky Children’s Center. They let foster children know that somebody cares for them, believes in them, and will help them overcome any obstacle.

Titled “Dream On,” this was P2K’s fifth annual Summer Concert Gala hosted by honorary chair Joan Waitt at her gorgeous estate atop Mount Soledad. Sold out at 580 guests, it was also the biggest, netting $500,000 for the cause. It began with a sunset VIP reception overlooking the ocean, offering guests a meet-and-greet and photo opportunity with the band. The main party continued with cocktails and canapes on the expansive lawn, where tables were set for dinner. Read More…

By |June 30th, 2013|Newsroom|Comments Off on Helping Kids… Promises2Kids Gala

Foster youth share inspirational stories of support provided by Promises2Kids

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50 students in Guardian Scholars program honored

6/26/13 – RANCHO SANTA FE REVIEWBy Kristina HouckHaving missed more than a year of elementary school between foster homes, Jennica Rebelez struggled academically as a child. With the help of Promises2Kids’ Guardian Scholars program, the 25-year-old is now pursuing her doctorate degree at UC Santa Barbara and training to be a school psychologist.

Promises2Kids’ Guardian Scholars program encourages former foster youth like Rebelez to pursue higher education. The program provides participating students with academic scholarships, financial aid workshops, and college planning and mentoring support. Read more…

By |June 26th, 2013|Newsroom|Comments Off on Foster youth share inspirational stories of support provided by Promises2Kids

“Good News” about San Diego non-profits and businesses doing good for your community

Promises2Kids benefit with REO Speedwagon.

6/24/13 – SAN DIEGO MAGAZINE : Monday Morning Good News – DREAM ON presented by Kevin Prior and ICW Group employees 2013 Summer Concert Gala was held on June 10 at the estate of Joan Waitt in La Jolla. Promises2Kids was the beneficiary of the $500,000 net proceeds from the evening. REO SPEEDWAGON performed a private benefit concert.  Promises2Kids conducts programs and services for San Diego’s foster youth at Polinsky Children’s Center, Camp Connect and Guardian Scholars. Some of the sponsors were Jeannie & Arthur Rivkin, Marc-Aaron Realtors, Gatto Pope & Walwick and SDG&E. Joan Waitt said, “It was an honor to be involved with this event and what it accomplished for our foster youth.” Read more…

By |June 24th, 2013|Newsroom|Comments Off on “Good News” about San Diego non-profits and businesses doing good for your community

Group helps foster youth consider STEM

6/19/2013 – UT SanDiego – A nonprofit group that works with foster youth has created a program to help high school students learn more about the fields of science, technology, engineering and math and consider future career opportunities. Developed under a partnership with Ashford University, which provided a $30,000 grant, the Promises2Kids organization developed the Junior Guardian Scholar program, which was kicked off in January.  Read more…

By |June 19th, 2013|Newsroom|0 Comments

Promises2Kids event features REO Speedwagon

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6/19/2013 – Rancho Santa Fe Review – Rock legends REO Speedwagon performed at the fifth annual Promises2Kids gala on June 10 at the home of Joan Waitt in La Jolla. View photos

By |June 19th, 2013|Newsroom|Comments Off on Promises2Kids event features REO Speedwagon

Nearly 90 Foster Siblings Reunited At Camp Connect

8/2/12 – KPBS.org – Imagine a weekend filled with swimming, rock climbing and horseback riding. Sounds like any kid’s dream vacation. However, this camp trip is even more special for foster children because they are reuniting with their brothers and sisters who are in different foster homes. Read more…

By |August 12th, 2012|Newsroom|0 Comments

Protecting Kids by Having the Courage to Report Child Abuse

12/1/11  –  UT SAN DIEGO  –  There is no worse crime than someone hurting a child. In the same vein, knowing a child is being hurt and sitting silent out of fear, apathy or lack of knowing what to do is equally damaging to the child. Each year, there are more than 70,000 calls made to the San Diego County Child Abuse Hotline. Although this number is shocking, there are many more cases of abuse in our community than what is reported.  Read more…

By |December 1st, 2011|Newsroom|0 Comments