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Friday, March 28, 2014

Heroes of the Week: Lead2Change Young People and Volunteers

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In 1996, the Greater Milwaukee Foundation founded the Youth In Service Fund program and due to its enormous success, the nonprofit Lead2Change was founded in 2011 and took the ever-growing program under its wing. During the switch, young people on the Lead2Change Youth Advisory Council assisted in every facet of Lead2Change’s creation. The nonprofit focuses on engaging young people in the community and utilizes philanthropy as a tool to help youth develop strong leadership skills. Lead2Change offers grants from its Youth in Service Fund for youth-led community service projects within Milwaukee, Waukesha, Ozaukee and Washington counties. Lead2Change has funded 471 projects and engaged nearly 1,000 young people in leadership and philanthropic activity. Worth mentioning is Lead2Change’s DreamBig! annual grant program that disburses two $5,000 grants to youth groups that want to improve their communities. These grants will be presented Aug. 8. (For information, email info@lead2changeinc.org.)

“We heavily depend on our volunteers and are very grateful for them,” says Lead2Change Executive Director Dionne Grayson, who has been involved since the nonprofit’s inception. “We are very intentional about making sure young people are engaged and provide opportunities for them to be successful.”

Lead2Change is currently seeking adult volunteers interested in teaching lifeshops for the Dream. Explore. Build. program, or to talk with young people about personal and life issues; board members to help with marketing and development; businesses and organizations willing to offer their space for trainings and workshops; and companies willing to offer paid internship experiences. Also needed: a tall bookshelf, a floor lamp, a lateral three-drawer file cabinet, and two non-Mac computers. For more information, call 414-226-2410, email info@lead2changeinc.org or visit lead2changeinc.org.