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Recent Activity

Posted Wednesday, June 10

We have officially wrapped up the 2019-20 school year and are now busily preparing for this next season of our school and community. Thank you – our community has been an incredible source of support through this time of COVID-19 and distance learning. Below, you can find a few pictures of our recent “reverse parade” where we celebrated the end of the year with our students.
 
I am excited to announce we are very close to achieving our fundraising goal before the end of our fiscal year on June 30! Please remember that we still have a generous matching donor who will double your gift to  Yellowstone, as long as you give before the end of June. If you are able, please make a gift online at yellowstoneschools.org/covid-response.
 
Standing With Our Community
Last week, we sent a note to our families reaffirming the organizational belief that drives our mission at Yellowstone: that all students are born with purpose and destined for success. The events of the past few months—from COVID-19 to George Floyd’s murder—are a reminder that we still have a long way to go until this belief is a reality for our Black students. Click here to find the full statement on our Facebook page.

Thank you again for all the many ways you join with us here at Yellowstone. Our work would not be possible without people like you.

Older Updates

Posted May 1, 2020: 

In the midst of everything that is going on, I know that I have sometimes found it hard to remember that life is still happening. My kids are growing older, Spring is nearly over, and special moments almost seem to be passing us by. 

May 9, 2020 will be a special moment in Yellowstone's history. For the first time, a Yellowstone alumni will officially graduate with a four-year college degree. Much of our work over the last two decades has been leading up to this moment, and it would be a shame if we allowed COVID-19 to steal our joy. 

To that end, will you join me in celebrating the class of 2020? Starting Monday and leading up to May 9, our team will be sending several emails with stories from our first college graduates. You can respond to these messages with your words of affirmation and congratulations, and we'll make sure they get them. (Update: read our emails about Nick, Brea, and Emerance!) 

If you are so moved, you can also help make Yellowstone possible for the next generation of students by giving a gift in honor of the Class of 2020.

Sincerely,

Ryan Dolibois
Executive Director


Posted April 23, 2020:

First and foremost, I hope you and your family remain safe and well in the midst of this crisis. There looks to be a long slog ahead of us still, but I am encouraged by the kindness and resilience that these moments draw out of us. 

The first photo above was taken this past Monday during our food distribution. These students were grateful to receive their food, but what really had them hopping with excitement was the chance to see some of the Yellowstone staff members they love, even if only for a moment. If this crisis has shown us anything, it's how deep the bonds of community and affection really run. 

35,000+ Meals Distributed!
I've said it before, and I'll keep on saying it: the generosity of this community blows me away! With your support, we have now completed seven weeks of our COVID-19 food distribution program. More than 35,000 meals have been distributed to our students and local community members. Thank you for all that you've done to help support this critical work! 

The road ahead of us is long, and we still have much work to do. The $500k matching gift is still in effect, so every gift you make until June 30 will be doubled. Your gift goes directly towards making sure our students are fed and have regular access to their teachers and school work. Click here to make a gift now »

Thank you again for being a part of this community. We couldn't serve our students without you. 

Sincerely,

Ryan Dolibois
Executive Director


Posted April 8:

Distance Learning and Food Distribution Services Continue
These days of staying home and limiting our social contact as much as possible are taking their toll on us all. What brings me comfort, however, is the amazing work that our teachers, staff, and volunteers have accomplished in a short amount of time. This is only our fourth week since the start of this new season, and look at all we have accomplished together:

  • With your assistance, we have distributed thousands of meals to our families and the local community
  • We have had personal contact with nearly 99% of our families, assessing their needs and building a program in response to their situations
  • From scratch, we built a Google classroom platform and a process for our teachers and admin to deliver lessons to our students. In addition, our teachers innovated and developed ways to serve our students who are most in need, from daily Facetime calls to video lessons, presentations, and more.
  • We have distributed nearly 200 chromebooks for our most vulnerable families
  • Through our fundraising efforts we have raised more than $400,000 towards our $1.2 million operating needs
  • Our operations work has continued unabated with payroll, bill payment, and even the launch of a new employee benefit package all continuing on schedule and with excellence

If that is what we have been able to accomplish in the last 21 days, I can’t wait to see what we do going forward!! This is the work of a committed and dedicated community—and we are so blessed to have you with us during this time. Please be encouraged: know that we serve a BIG mission and an even BIGGER God who remains faithful to us and to our schools even in the midst of this crisis.

We're in the middle of Holy Week, and I hope you will take some time these next few days to prepare your heart and mind for Easter. Tomorrow is Maundy Thursday, where we remember the new commandment Jesus gave us: to love one another. As I reflect on this commandment, I count myself lucky to be surrounded by so many incredible examples of love. Thank you for loving our students, families, and staff. 

The BIG Announcement
I am SO excited to make this announcement: An anonymous donor has pledged a $500,000 matching gift! This donor has even agreed to make the match retroactive, beginning April 1 and running through the end of our fiscal year on June 30. This means any gift you give to Yellowstone until June 30 will be doubled! 

Thank you again for being a part of this community. We couldn't serve our students without you. 

Sincerely,

Ryan Dolibois
Executive Director

 

Support Yellowstone's Students and Families

As you know, we are in the midst of an unprecedented crisis. This crisis hits each of us in a unique way—and yet, we are called to come together in service and love. 

Many of the families we serve are facing unemployment and an insecure financial future due to the effects of COVID-19, and food assistance is vital as they navigate this crisis. We are building a reliable food-distribution network  for our students and their families.

Meanwhile, our teachers are developing an high-quality distance learning program so that our students continue to learn while at home. 

Our community is coming together to support one another, and we need your help to continue. Yellowstone relies on the generosity of many people like you -- people who are willing to give so that our students can have a bright future. We know times are hard, but we also know that our community is stronger when we lean on one another.