Nonprofit Partner Spotlight: Preston Taylor Ministries

Do you remember that slightly older person you looked up to as a child? Maybe it was a big sister, a next-door neighbor, or a teammate. You thought this person hung the moon, and you wanted to be just like her.

Mentor. Friend. Role model. Hero. Whatever you call this person, you know how much of a difference she made by showing you the ropes in your early years – some of the most important years of your life.

A high school student working with his mentee at Preston Taylor Ministries. There’s nothing like helping a child get to those “ah ha!” moments, and seeing their smile of accomplishment!

Preston Taylor Ministries (PTM) knows how essential positive role models are in the lives of children. That’s why the organization seeks to provide afterschool and mentoring programming for more than 150 students, ranging in age from kindergarteners to high school seniors. Through the valuable programming offered to students, PTM empowers them to overcome many of the challenges faced by the Preston Taylor community including drug use, gang involvement, teenage pregnancy, illiteracy, and crime.

Patrick, a rising 11th grade student at Big Picture High School, has been involved with PTM since 2005. “I used to be a mentee,” says Patrick. “I had a mentor and I looked up to him, so I can see how my mentee, Jerome, looks up to me.”

PTM is able to offer these rich life experiences to students like Patrick, Jerome, and so many other students because of the outpouring of volunteer support. Because of the organization’s emphasis on building “joy-filled friendships,” volunteers are crucial to PTM’s success. More than 200 volunteers each week give their time, energy, and resources to PTM and the children and teens it serves.

“I love the whole PTM atmosphere. …We’ve been living in the Preston Taylor community since 2005. [Each of my children have] been a member of the PTM program. I love it and they love it. My daughter who is 14 actually comes on Wednesdays now and reads to children there.” –LaVonda, a parent of four PTM students
But, more volunteers are needed. PTM has a waiting list of students at two sites. With more volunteers willing to get involved, PTM can engage even more students in its activities and programming. At PTM, it’s all about friendships, and through afterschool programming and mentorship opportunities, volunteers accomplish PTM’s mission by “empowering children to discover and live their God-inspired dreams.”

Here are ways to get involved with Preston Taylor Ministries today:

Volunteer Training – Wednesday, August 8, 4-6 p.m.
For all individuals interested in volunteering with PTM for the 2012-2013 school year.
> Sign up to participate in the training.

Afterschool Tutoring Program – Begins Monday, August 13 (Ongoing)
Loving staff and volunteers meet with children each day after school in small groups, focusing on math, reading, and homework. Volunteers are needed to facilitate the subject rotations, help with homework, and provide instruction.
> Volunteer to help a child with his homework!

Fun Friday – Begins Friday, August 17 (Ongoing)
Every Friday during the school year, more than 60 PTM children are exposed to a variety of volunteer-led enrichment opportunities including dance, sports, art, music, gardening, and more.
> Volunteer to help make Fun Friday even more fun.

For other opportunities with Preston Taylor Ministries, view a full list here, or contact Martha Willis, volunteer coordinator for PTM, at Martha@prestontaylorministries.org or (615) 569-7468. Learn more about PTM on the organization’s blog, or at www.ptmweb.ik.org. Check out this uplifting video of the good things happening at PTM!

Preston Taylor Ministries from David McKay on Vimeo.

To view a complete list of Hands On Nashville Nonprofit Partners, click here.

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