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2017 Summer Alumni Mentorships

1) Judith Creed Homes for Adult Independence

Judith Creed Homes for Adult Independence (JCHAI) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping people with intellectual disabilities and autism live and work in the community as much like everyone else as possible.  Although we are about to celebrate our 30th anniversary, we win awards annually for being one of the most innovative organizations in the country and government agencies from other states are now seeking us out to provide services there.  Our website is www.jchai.org and you can learn more about what we do there. 

Jeffrey Careyva writes: "I spent a little less than two months working for JCHAI in Bryn Mawr, right outside of Philadelphia. JCHAI offers apartment services, classes and frequent trips to adults of all ages in the organization who live with intellectual disabilities. It was a wonderful opportunity to help set the organization on the right track to increasing their social media presence, improve their website and set up a blog for JCHAI clients to use. But one of my favorite parts of working there was getting involved in the evening classes held for young adults; classes like cooking, programming and 'game night' all serve to teach the young adults in the program basic yet vital life skills and how to socialize within their peer group. We learned how to count money by playing Monopoly, how to program by working with LEGO robots and how to self-advocate through blogs and creative writing. I made a lot of friends there that I'm sad to leave behind so soon, but I plan to return to JCHAI and volunteer a little when the fall semester begins!"

 

2) Rising Tide Interactive  

Rising Tide Interactive is a data-driven digital advertising agency with a personal approach and a history of winning results for our clients. Over the past two election cycles, our work has helped Democrats win nine US Senate races and seven gubernatorial elections. We’ve helped win hard-fought ballot initiatives on critical issues like gay marriage and personhood. And we’ve helped raise tens of millions of dollars for campaigns and non-profit organizations.

We work exclusively for political campaigns and non-profit organizations; we have no corporate clients. All of us at Rising Tide Interactive are strongly committed to using our knowledge of the Internet to create positive change – helping candidates and organizations who focus on promoting social justice.

Zoe Albano-Oritt writes: "I had a great experience at Rising Tide Interactive this summer. They taught me the basics very quickly and I was able to get into the swing of things within the first week there. A typical week would involve many different responsibilities, including compiling analytic data reports for both digital advertisements and fundraising emails, creating and managing fundraising pages for clients, drafting email and ad copy, and managing multiple forms of social media for clients as well. For example, I wrote and edited fundraising emails for large-scale fundraising campaigns such as those of Senator Tim Kaine, the Democratic Party of Virginia, and Mayor Nan Whaley, current mayor of Dayton, Ohio and Democratic gubernatorial candidate. I also managed a database of major political campaign disbursements and learned basic HTML and CSS to format fundraising emails before we sent them out to our clients' lists of subscribers, along with CRMs used by political consultants such as ActBlue, Blue State Digital, and NGPVAN, and other applications like Email on Acid. One of the things that struck me the most while I was working for RTI was when I received a finished email that I'd written for Senator Kaine. It was really incredible to see the words that I'd written being used to fundraise for a candidate who I admire, and see how directly I was able to make a difference in this way. Additionally, everyone in the office was very helpful and friendly to me, and I left knowing I'd made connections that would last."