Human Services

A Stepping Stone Foundation

  • Phoenix, AZ
  • www.asteppingstone.org

Mission Statement

A Stepping Stone Foundation creates success for children of limited opportunities by providing a tuition free, high quality, comprehensive preschool program and ensuring the success of the parents with their children by requiring them to attend tuition free adult education classes, parental classroom participation and providing tuition free child care and enrichment for the siblings of the preschoolers. A post secondary scholarship program is in place for former preschoolers that graduate high school.

Main Programs

  1. A Stepping Stone Foundation Preschool With Adult Literacy
  2. Billie Gannaway Memorial Scholarship
  3. A Stepping Stone Limited Mentoring
  4. Christmas Angels
Service Areas

Self-reported

Arizona

Phoenix, Arizona
Miami, Arizona

ruling year

1990

Executive Director

Self-reported

Mrs. Cynthia Burget Gattorna

President of the Board since 2015

Self-reported

Ms. Jeanne Baker

Keywords

Self-reported

Education, Family Literacy, Preschool, Childcare, Scholarship, Job Training

Sign in or create an account to view Form(s) 990 for 2015, 2014 and 2013.
Register now

EIN

74-2567068

 Number

6207855796

Physical Address

2851 W. Kathleen Rd.

Phoenix, AZ 85053

Contact

Cause Area (NTEE Code)

Family Services (P40)

Kindergarten, Nursery Schools, Preschool, Early Admissions (B21)

Scholarships, Student Financial Aid, Awards (B82)

IRS Filing Requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

Programs + Results

How does this organization make a difference?

Overview

Self-reported by organization

A Stepping Stone Foundation has completed its fifh year of external evaluation by a professional researcher, Dolores Retana, M.Ed.  Dolores has examined children's performance on Get Ready to Read and the Teachers evaluation of the students using the SCBE (Social Competence Behavior Evaluation) as well as interviewed key stakeholders such as the children's parents and the teachers.  All indicators point to an highly effective intervention for children at risk of school failure due to poor or no literacy in their home environment.  Parents still report a high degree of gratitude and motivation to help their children and themselves.

In the 2010-2011 school year, A Stepping Stone Foundation served 78 families; 73 of whom stayed 6 months or more. This last number indicates a much more stable trend in our population. than last year.

Programs

Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Program 1

A Stepping Stone Foundation Preschool With Adult Literacy

35 preschoolers (ages 3 or 4 as of August 31st) are enrolled at public school sites (Westwood Longitudinal Program) in Phoenix, Arizona. They are enrolled based on low family literacy indicators as shown by questionnaire and face-to-face interviews. At least one parent signs a contract agreeing to: attend parenting classes for a minimum of 6 hours a month, attend ESL or GED classes a minimum of 16 hours a month, open their home to one hour “home visits” from the teachers once a month, and spend at least 4 hours a month in the classroom with their child engaged in reading or reading readiness activities.  total a minimum of 5 hours a month (via home visits and parent/child classroom time). Other opportunities for intergenerational activities include field trips, or Community Night.  programs, the Foundation is listed in the local Community Information and Referral Publication, and by far our most powerful tool, word of mouth between past parents and potential parents is encouraged. Parents form a social community as they move through education and parenting classes together. A college scholarship is available to any child that attended preschool for 6 months or more after their high school graduation.

            Parents attend a Wednesday orientation the first day of school to reinforce their contracted obligations and to orient them about how best to work with their child during their classroom time with their child. Three days a month involve parenting topics such as assertive discipline, developmentally appropriate activities for the child and family to do at home, etc. ESL and GED classes start as soon as Rio Salado College can arrange teachers to be on campus; typcially the second week of preschool.
            Children attend class from 8:00 am until noon Monday through Thursday and are served hot breakfast and hot lunch on these days courtesy of the school district. They acquire pre-literacy skills through hands-on language-based activities in a rich, developmentally appropriate learning environment. The teacher’s lesson plans are based on recent research based learning theory and are grounded in the Arizona State Standards for preschool. Friday is specifically reserved for the teachers to do home visits, where the parent is given tools and instruction on how to be their child's first best teacher.

Category

Education

Population(s) Served

Poor/Economically Disadvantaged, Indigent, General

Children and Youth (infants - 19 years.)

Adults

Budget

$280,000.00

Program 2

Billie Gannaway Memorial Scholarship

Former A Stepping Stone preschoolers who attended one of our programs 6 or more months are elligible for post-secondary scholarships for tuition, books and supplies.

Category

Education

Population(s) Served

Poor/Economically Disadvantaged, Indigent, General

Budget

$14,000.00

Program 3

A Stepping Stone Limited Mentoring

This program is operated by A Stepping Stone Foundation volunteers. Former preschoolers who are sophomores, juniors and seniors in High School are invited to our annual Stepping Into College event to learn how to fill out the FASFA and apply for multiple scholarships including our Billie Gannaway Memorial Scholarship.

Category

Youth Development

Population(s) Served

Youth/Adolescents only (14 - 19 years)

Poor/Economically Disadvantaged, Indigent, General

Budget

$5,000.00

Program 4

Christmas Angels

A Stepping Stone Foundation's Christmas Angel program takes place each year from October to December 31st. Each family enrolled by October 1st of any given year is invited to fill out a card indicating their children's clothing needs and toy desires. These cards are then dispersed in the local community for fulfillment. Donors are asked to keep each child's items to a purchase limit of $50 each. Each child and sibling in our program 12-years-old and younger receives a minimum of one book, one article of clothing and one toy. These items are given anonymously to theparents so the parents can decide how to use the gifts. For instance, a parent may put them under a Christmas tree, or present the gifts to the children from themselves  to use the items as part of the general household if Christmas is not celebrated in that family. This program is run by volunteers. The budget reflects the in-kind item donations and when practical, grocery gift cards that are included to ease holiday meal shopping.

Category

Human Services

Population(s) Served

Poor/Economically Disadvantaged, Indigent, General

Children and Youth (infants - 19 years.)

Immigrants/Newcomers/Refugees

Budget

$5,000.00

Service Areas

Self-reported

Arizona

Phoenix, Arizona
Miami, Arizona

Funding Needs

Our primary funding need is for cash donations which provide direct program services and/or general operating expenses. A Stepping Stone Foundation is currently funded entirely by foundation grants, charitable donations and fundraising events. A gift of $6,000 will fund one entire family through our program for one school year. A gift of $80,000 will fund the teaching staff for one preschool classroom for an entire year. A gift of $100 will provide 10 hours of quality preschool, adult education or childcare for one child or adult. We currently have a very young, very modest classroom endowment fund at the Arizona Community Foundation so that we may receive larger gifts that would be directed toward funding at least one site (two full preschool classrooms and all adult programs) into perpetuity. The fund goal at this time is $6,000,000. In addition, A Stepping Stone Foundation needs funds for our Billie Gannaway Memorial Scholarship fund, from which we draw our funds for the college scholarship we offer to all youth who graduate high school and are in need of funds to continue post secondary education.

photos




External Reviews

Source: greatnonprofits.org

The review section is powered by Great Nonprofits

Financials

Financial information is an important part of gauging the short- and long-term health of the organization.

A STEPPING STONE FOUNDATION
Fiscal year: Jul 01-Jun 30
Yes, financials were audited by an independent accountant.

Sign in or create an account to view this information

NEED MORE INFO ON THIS NONPROFIT?

Free: Gain immediate access to the following:
  • Address, phone, website and contact information
  • Forms 990 for 2015, 2014 and 2013
  • Board Chair and Board Members
  • Access to the GuideStar Community
Get all this now for free
Need the ability to download nonprofit data and more advanced search options? Consider a Premium or Pro Search subscription.

Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

A Stepping Stone Foundation

Leadership

NEED MORE INFO ON THIS NONPROFIT?

Free: Gain immediate access to the following:
  • Address, phone, website and contact information
  • Forms 990 for 2015, 2014 and 2013
  • Board Chair and Board Members
  • Access to the GuideStar Community
Need the ability to download nonprofit data and more advanced search options? Consider a Premium or Pro Search subscription.

Executive Director

Mrs. Cynthia Burget Gattorna

President of the Board

Ms. Jeanne Baker

BIO

Cynthia Gattorna currently is the Executive Director of A Stepping Stone Foundation, a grass-roots, public foundation whose mission is to provide high quality preschool for children who are at risk of school failure due to poor literacy factors at home, or second language learning issues. She holds a Masters Degree in Applied Linguistics (Southern Illinois University Linguistic Fellow) and a Bachelor's Degree in Elementary Education (ESL Certification). Before coming to A Stepping Stone Foundation, she taught in the Phoenix elementary public school system for 14 years in bilingual and ESL settings, and directed the Child and Adolescent Programs at NAMI-Arizona (National Alliance for the Mentally Ill). She has held leadership positions throughout her career from Site Improvement Plan Team Leader at Phoenix Elementary School District to Chair of the Search Team for Sr. Minister at her local faith home, where she is currently president of the congrgation. Cynthia is bilingual and well versed in a variety of communication and leadership styles. Recent leadership positions include: Vice Chair of SouthCentral Maricopa County Regional Partnership (convened by United Way Valley of the Sun) and currently is a member of Early Care and Education Committee (Children's Action Alliance, Arizona), Organization for Nonprofit Executives (ONE), and AFP (Association of Nonprofit Professionals-Greater Arizona Chapter. She is on the Board of Directors of ONE.
On a personal note, she was born and raised in Altoona, Iowa and has been happily married for 28 years, all of which was spent in Phoenix, Arizona. She has two wonderful children aged 23 and 27. Her husband of 34 years works at ArizonaPublic Service Company.

STATEMENT FROM THE Executive Director

"Imagine yourself as a 4 year old in a loving family where no one reads.  No one ever sits down with you in their lap and reads a story to you. You never see anyone seated at the breakfast table or on the couch reading the newspaper (let alone a quick survey of the news online!).  You may watch a lot of television, but no one knows enough to monitor what you watch or to discuss what you watch in a thoughtful way.  You enter school at age 5 with only a few hundred words of English vocabulary and perhaps no more in your native language.  Science and my personal experience tell me you are already deeply at risk of never completing high school, let alone college or other post high school training needed to earn a living wage.  A Stepping Stone Foundation exists to give those in that or similar situations a way out of the deep hole poverty usually digs for our youngest most precious resource--children!  We recognize that it does indeed take a village to raise a child and while we're at it, we help their parents learn to read, learn to think critically, and have a passion for life-long learning, too.  It is the smart thing to do.  It is the human thing to do!  Please check A Stepping Stone Foundation out at:  asteppingstone.org"

Governance

BOARD CHAIR

Ms. Jeanne Baker

Avnet Technology Soluntions

Term: July 2015 - June 2017

BOARD LEADERSHIP PRACTICES

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section, which enables organizations and donors to transparently share information about essential board leadership practices. Self-reported by organization


RESPONSE NOT PROVIDED

BOARD ORIENTATION & EDUCATION

Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations?


RESPONSE NOT PROVIDED

CEO OVERSIGHT

Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year?


RESPONSE NOT PROVIDED

ETHICS & TRANSPARENCY

Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year?


RESPONSE NOT PROVIDED

BOARD COMPOSITION

Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership?


RESPONSE NOT PROVIDED

BOARD PERFORMANCE

Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years?