Think Big for Kids is a Tampa-based non-profit organization with the goal of helping underprivileged kids discover what they can really do. Founded in 2016 by Tony DiBenedetto, the non-profit targets 6th to 12th graders to show them potential career opportunities post-graduation. DiBenedetto realized many middle and high school students had no idea what they were going to or wanted to do after they graduate high school.
Think Big for Kids has three pillars upon which it operates: career exploration, mentorship, and job readiness and placement. With these three pillars, the non-profit has the goal of preparing 2,000 teenagers for the workforce through the Boys & Girls Club of Tampa Bay by 2022.
One of Think Big for Kids’ main focus is working with low-income households to help the children growing up in these communities to rise above the poverty line and break the cycle that they are so often left in. Think Big for Kids does this by connecting these students to their passion.
If you’re looking to get involved in an organization that is making real change, there is plenty you can do to help out the kids involved with Think Big for Kids! There are several volunteering opportunities with varying time commitments to fit individual schedules. As a workshop presenter, you could present skill-building to kids at the Boys & Girls Club and the only time commitment is your preparation for the presentation and the presentation itself, which you can do as often as you’d like. Another option is to be a mentor, which is a little more of a time commitment. As a mentor, you will be paired with a mentee who you will be helping navigate high school. The time commitment here is the required training to be a mentor, the process of getting a background check and such, and then meeting with your mentee at least once a month.
A more directly career-based volunteering opportunity is being a Career Showcase Partner Company. This showcase introduces kids at the Boys & Girls Club to various careers and companies that they can potentially see themselves working in at some point. The time commitment here is one presentation a month with the hope for a commitment encompassing one academic year. Similarly, you can host a field trip to your business in Tampa Bay. The only time commitment here is the planning of the field trip and the 2 to 5 hours that the kids will be there. Finally, you can volunteer to be on a committee. Some of the current committees are marketing, career exploration, and events. Each committee is different so the time commitment varies, but typically it's limited to just one meeting per month.
If you don’t have the time to volunteer with Think Big for Kids, you can always donate to the Tampa Bay non-profit to help them help the kids! As these kids will help shape our future, you can help them. So check out Think Big for Kids and see what you can do to help make a kid’s career goals come true.