The founder of Restore Education, John F. Rhodes, didn’t think single parents and disadvantaged youth should have to conform to traditional education if their circumstances were unforgiving. In 1997, he and his staff began curating unique pathways to and through college, as well as developing workforce training to form self-sustaining careers.
Serving over 9,000 San Antonio individuals, the non-profit operates three programs to help transform lives—an individualized GED program, a college readiness and support service, and a career training program. These services give San Antonio learners the tools needed to be self-supporting adults, exemplar parents, and productive community members.
House of Neighborly Services | View Website
Over 100 years ago, a refugee and Presbyterian missionary fled the Mexican Revolution and came to the West Side of San Antonio to encourage other refugees leaving behind desperate situations. Soon after, The House of Neighborly Services (HNS) established to support families building new lives, providing social services to a neighborhood in need. Now, helping the neighbor has become a way of life for HNS. From early childhood development to senior services, the organization meets the holistic needs of the community. A breadth of resources is provided through the Family Support Program, including diapers, food security, emotional support, housing, medical and legal needs.
When Eve Oliphant drafted a newspaper ad in 1974 inviting people into her home who had concerns for mentally ill family members, a national grassroots organization started. Today, National Alliance for Mental Illness (NAMI) operates on the local, state and national level, providing support, education and referrals to families while working to ensure non-discriminatory access to resources. NAMI San Antonio offers programs including caregiver classes, a peer-to-peer educational course for individuals living with mental illness, and public presentations such as “Ending the Silence,” which equips middle and high schools to recognize signs and symptoms of mental conditions.
The local affiliate of the nationally known organization Girls, Inc. inspires San Antonio girls to be strong, smart and bold. The evidence-based, girl-serving programs help females reach personal, educational and career goals by looking past discriminatory messages and embracing their internal self-worth. Trained facilitators meet girls with age-appropriate and hands-on learning opportunities inside and outside of school. Girls can dip their toes in a diverse array of studies, including life skills, outdoor experiences, STEM studies, leadership training, economics and social action. Dreaming big and exploring possibilities happens at Girls, Inc. through a safe and empowering environment fostered in each program.
A rise in juvenile crime unsettled founders of the Juvenile Outreach and Vocational Education Network (JOVEN). For almost 30 years, the group has combatted youth crime in Bexar County through education and support services, collaborating with local organizations and churches to assist high-risk youth. A holistic approach to programming meets youth in all stages- health education, prevention, intervention and victim services. Leaders of America, a summer youth-intern opportunity, offers first-hand knowledge of necessary workforce ethic and skills. Character and resiliency are woven into each program to help children make positive changes toward a better-quality life and a successful future.
Project Transformation- Rio Texas | View Website
A national ministry of the United Methodist Church, Project Transformation focuses on three communities—children, college students and churches. All three C’s are combined in one interconnected mission, to change lives through relationship. The Rio Texas Chapter, formed in 2015, starts by addressing the needs of low-income and at-risk youth. A summer camp emphasizing literacy improvement is implemented by college students, who live in intentional community together, building relationships while learning a unique, meaningful skillset. All of this takes place in struggling churches, aimed to be revitalized through dynamic and relational connections.