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Acer America Gives to Pivotal's Emergency Assistance Fund

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On March 18, 2020, Pivotal launched an Emergency Assistance Fund to provide immediate financial support to youth who have been negatively impacted by COVID-19. These youth had experienced a drastic loss of income and were worried about paying for essential needs like rent, groceries, and utilities.

We were thrilled with many generous offers of support from individuals, corporations, and foundations who wanted to step up for foster youth during the COVID-19 crisis. One of these companies was Acer America, a new corporate partner who recently worked with us on our Finals Care Packages Project...

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When They're Just Not That Into You

Getting teens to focus on their future can be tricky under normal circumstances, let alone a time hard-hit by a global pandemic. This era of uncertainty triggers a wide variety of responses, and for some, the response is to go quiet and withdraw. Pivotal coaches share their secrets for getting clever and engaging scholars during these tough times. 

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Ashlee Jemmott Joins Pivotal as Director of Strategic Partnerships

Pivotal is thrilled to welcome Ashlee Jemmott as Director of Strategic Partnerships. In her new role, Ashlee will work towards creating positive change within the foster care ecosystem. We caught up with Ashlee to learn more about her journey into nonprofit work and the road that brought her to this new role at Pivotal.

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Pivotal Coaches Provide Additional Academic Support

By Christine Salinas

With COVID-19, high school students everywhere are dealing with a lot more than they are used to. We caught up with Chelsea Kolander, Pivotal’s High School Coaching Coordinator II, who shared valuable insight into how high school students from foster care are doing and how Pivotal is supporting them. 
Pivotal: Being a high school student these days is tough already and COVID-19 has made things even harder. How are our high school scholars generally...
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With College Tours Grounded, We Get Creative

Even under normal circumstances, foster youth don’t have families to take them on college tours. Each year, our high school scholars rely on Pivotal to help them explore their collegiate options, take them on local campus tours, and arrange introductions to professors and staff who can answer questions for youth.

But, as we continue to shelter-in-place, how do we help our kids explore colleges when everything is shut down? We get creative! 

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Right Now, the World Needs More Helpers

When Silicon Valley began to feel the impact of Covid-19, our young people from foster care turned to us scared.  As their college campuses closed down, many had no family home to return to. The hourly jobs that helped make ends meet were disappearing quickly. Many felt overwhelmed with worries about how they’d make rent, buy groceries, and pay for their internet service.   

Our team knew we had to act fast. A week ago we launched the Emergency Assistance Fund to provide emergency financial support to foster youth whose lives have been turned upside down by the COVID-19 pandemic. 

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Acer's employees are photographed just before getting down to business to pack 100 Finals Care packages for Pivotal's college scholars.

Yes, You Can!

For most college students, finals can create a lot of stress and anxiety. Receiving a fun package in the mail, a timely phone call or an encouraging text from friends and family can make all the difference to let them know that YES, YOU CAN!

Learn how Acer America, one of the world’s leading information and communications technology firms, supports Pivotal’s foster youth community through our Finals Care Package Volunteer Project.

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Pivotal Receives a $50,000 Grant Award from The Upwork Foundation

We are proud to announce that Pivotal is the proud recipient of a $50,000 grant from The Upwork Foundation. The award supports our Path to Self-Sufficiency for Foster Youth Program, which provides focused academic and employment coaching to over 300 high school and college participants in Silicon Valley, and prepares and places 115 scholars into paid summer internships.

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Delrisha White poses with Brenda Johnson, her aunt and guardian, and her social worker, Brian Baggaley at her graduation from Bennett College in May 2013.

Historically Black Colleges Give Foster Youth an Edge

by Delrisha White, Ed.M. 

Historically Black Colleges are game-changers for students aging out of the foster care system. They provide sound financial value, a sense of family, and increase the chances for first-generation graduates to move out of poverty and into the middle class. As a Black woman, a former foster youth, and HBCU graduate, I can attest to what these fine institutions do for first-generation students like me.

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Pivotal alumna Sarah Gentle at her graduation from Chico State University.

Pivotal Voices: From Podcaster to Aspiring Policy Maker

by Sarah Gentle

Not even a week after moving back to San Jose from Chico post-graduation, I received a text from my lifelong mentor Savonna, casually asking me if I would like to participate in Silicon Valley Community Foundation's podcast series to talk about Pivotal. As a former foster youth, Pivotal participant, and aspiring policy maker, I immediately agreed and I’m so glad that I did.

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Leap Into a New Year with Pivotal CEO, Elise Cutini

By Janelle Blakely & Christine Salinas

We’re excited to share some of our plans for 2020 with our supporters, and who better to present them than our CEO, Elise Cutini! Read on to learn how she’s leading the 2020 charge to provide deeper services to our community’s foster youth (and a few words about her weekend passion).

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On Giving Tuesday, Be On Their Side

Does December 3, 2019 ring any bells? Maybe it’s your mom’s birthday?  Or the date of your wedding anniversary?

It’s certainly a date that makes the folks at Pivotal pop right up. After all, December 3, 2019, is GIVING TUESDAY, the second-largest giving day of the year (the largest is December 31)!  

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