Founded in 2006 as a non-profit 501(c)(3) tax exempt organization, Helping Hands for Youth (HHY) is a group of volunteers committed to service, programs and activities which enhance youth educational opportunities and self-esteem. Helping Hands promotes community activities that build harmony among people. In partnership with the Cage Family Scholarship Fund, HHY provides college scholarships for books and related school expenses, “a helping hand” to students from low to moderate income households. We also honor local citizens who serve as outstanding role models and mentors in our community.
Since 2010, more than 175 complete laptop computer packages have been awarded to college bound high school seniors. Our program has provided workshops for 520 high school seniors who have completed our Stepping Off to College program. This year, the more than 70 students who complete the ‘Stepping Off to College Program’ requirements and provide college enrollment certification will receive laptop computer packages. The program includes workshops on college entry readiness, seeking financial aid, financial literacy, time management, health management, social skills and computer literacy. The 2020 Class includes students from Whitehall Yearling High School, Columbus City Schools, Marsh Run Community, Pheasant Run Community, Columbus Scholar House, Homeport and Columbus Metropolitan Housing Agency. Many of the recipients are the first in their family to enter college. In 2019, 80% of our workshop attendees entered into college. This was above the national average.
Special emphasis is placed on the African-American male, economically and socially challenged students who need assistance. HHY board members and volunteers serve as mentors, establish positive relationships and give support through programs, projects and workshops. We provide ‘soft skills’ to help students become better young adults and excel as they pursue their education and career goals. Through our partnership with you, we provide ‘helping hands’ to make a difference as we work with one person at a time to bring courage, strength and dignity to the student. Enriching the lives of youth and families in the greater Columbus Community is the mission of HHY. Since 2006, we have provided more than $478,000.00 in student support and non-profit agency program support, including the Columbus Scholar House Programs, King Arts Complex Youth Programs, Boys and Girls Clubs, Ballet Met Minority Outreach Programs, Football and Performing Arts Programs, Momentum and Homeport Community Center Programs.