supporting Cambridge public school students

Board Members See the Value of Tutoring Upfront…

How often do you hear about non-profit board members whose family members have been directly impacted by the organization or who actually volunteer for their organization? Let’s introduce you to some CSV Board members who have had exactly these experiences.

Bill Zamparelli has been a Board member for more than 10 years. While his own children were in the Cambridge schools, he remembers two specific occasions when a CSV volunteer provided just the right kind of help. One experience involved his 2nd grader who was having an issue with early math. CSV was able to find the right person to work with his daughter, who happened to be a twin. The volunteer tutor, a retired professor from the Harvard Graduate School of Education, was herself a twin, with complete understanding of how to relate to a somewhat doubtful student. It was a perfect match! And when another of Bill’s children was in the throes of college essay writing, a tutor from CSV’s College Planning and Essay Writing program (now called College Ready) was able to give her the right attention (almost every parent of a college applicant knows this pressure!). As Bill remembers it, he had not heard of CSV, but after seeing how the agency made just the right connections for his kids, he was hooked and decided to volunteer on the Board.

A similar story comes from Holly Donaldson, a relatively recent Board member with three children in the public schools. Holly’s positive experience began with NetPals, CSV’s program that matches 7th graders with a science mentor, mostly in STEM fields, from several local corporations. Coincidentally, two of her sons, several years apart, had the same NetPal, a concrete engineer from WR Grace. Each son really bonded with the Grace mentor, and it was the first time that all three had ever really had a relationship with a professional adult who was not a family friend. All three sons talked eagerly and often about their NetPals, and especially liked the first meeting when students went to the mentors’ work sites. As Holly says, “the ability to meet and have that person take an interest in them made them feel special. And the adult mentors enjoyed it, too.” Like Bill, Holly joined the CSV Board knowing personally that CSV volunteers can make such an important impact on the lives of the students they reach.

CSV would like to extend its gratitude to Bill and Holly for sharing their personal experiences. CSV salutes you and is grateful for your Board participation!