Youth Development

Best Friends of Neenah Menasha Inc

  • Neenah, WI
  • www.bestfriendsnm.org

Mission Statement

Helping young people thrive through the power of mentoring friendships and supportive family networks.

Main Programs

  1. Community-Based Mentoring
  2. After-School Mentoring
  3. Lunch Mentoring
  4. The Learning Harbor
Service Areas

Self-reported

Wisconsin

Best Friends of Neenah-Menasha serves children and families primarily located in the Neenah and Menasha area.

ruling year

1977

Principal Officer since 2005

Self-reported

Dawn M. Gohlke

Keywords

Self-reported

Kids, Youth, Mentoring, At-Risk, Families, Children

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Also Known As

Best Friends

EIN

39-1260017

 Number

3664989715

Physical Address

181 E. North Water Street Suite 225

Neenah, 54956

Contact

Cause Area (NTEE Code)

Adult, Child Matching Programs (O30)

Children's and Youth Services (P30)

Family Services (P40)

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

Vision Statement: Transforming the lives of young people, their families and our community.

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

Community-Based Mentoring

Community-Based Mentoring is a one-to-one mentoring program that connects a mentor with a child or teen in need. Volunteer mentors spend approximately 8-12 hours a month with their mentee incorporating them into their everyday life, broadening their horizons and bringing a little inspiration into their lives. Matches may decide to catch frogs on a summer afternoon, play in a pile of leaves on a cool autumn day, or race a golf cart around the gold course. If you were to observe a match together, you might think they are just "hanging out," when actually the mentor is steering their conversations and activities to help build their developmental assets. The concept of asset building, developed by the non-profit Search Institute of Minneapolis, has generated a nationwide movement of organizations, businesses, and individuals who want to create an encouraging environment for their communities- young people. Paying particular attention to those developmental assets that every child needs to succeed, this program is proven to increase a child's/teens self-confidence, ability to care for others, and competency as productive and resourceful youth in the community where they reside.

Category

Youth Development

Population(s) Served

Children and Youth (infants - 19 years.)

None

Budget

$136,159.21

Program 2

After-School Mentoring

After-School Mentoring is a one-to-one mentoring program for children between the ages of 5 and 18. Held weekly from 3:30-4:30pm at Neenah and Menasha High School, this program focuses on academics and specific developmental assets that each child needs to develop further.  Such assistance will in turn help the student succeed in school, adopt healthy lifestyles and behaviors and avoid high-risk behaviors.

Category

Youth Development

Population(s) Served

Children and Youth (infants - 19 years.)

Budget

$142,338.53

Program 3

Lunch Mentoring

Lunch Mentoring (LMP) is a one-to-one mentoring program held weekly at school during lunch for children between the ages of 5 and 17 years of age. Held in the communities of Neenah and Menasha, this program matches high school students and community volunteers with a child that has been referred to Best Friends by a teacher, social worker, or guidance counselor. Each match meets during the child’s lunch period, and sessions may include the use of educational or recreational games to enhance relationship development.

Category

Youth Development

Population(s) Served

Children and Youth (infants - 19 years.)

None

Budget

$148,282.45

Program 4

The Learning Harbor

A community-based program that ensures at-risk kids have the educational, economic, and emotional tools they need to thrive after high school and into early adulthood.

Phase 1: This program uses boat building to bring core curriculum alive, and strengthen writing and math competencies.

Phase 2: Youth will learn employment skills by running a canoe/kayak rental/concession shop on Little Lake Butte des Morts .

Innovative programming that teaches youth life skills like teamwork, communication, dependability and positive self-esteem.

Category

Youth Development

Population(s) Served

Male Youth/Adolescents (14 - 19 years)

Female Youth/Adolescents (14 - 19 years)

Budget

$5,000.00

Charting Impact

Self-reported by organization

Five powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

  1. What is the organization aiming to accomplish?
    Empowering Youth: Working one-to-one with a child or teen increases their developmental assets and lowers risky behavior that leads to juvenile crime and victimization.

    Strengthening Families: We help strengthen our families to prevent child abuse and neglect through parent resilience, new social connections, and concrete supports in time of need.

    Promoting Academic Excellence: Upon entering sixth grade, a dedicated staff member works with each student to remove barriers to learning and help them navigate the road to graduation and higher education.
  2. What are the organization's key strategies for making this happen?
    Matches develop relationships which help to meet the *identified and individualized needs of the child as those determined by significant people in the child's life.

    *(Goals are based on the Search Institutes Developmental Assets, but can include goals outside of the assets)

    Our most commonly identified goals are**:
    •Improved responsibility
    •Improved self-esteem
    •Increased motivation to do well in school
    •Improved planning and decision-making skills
    Increased honesty

    **A full listing of all selected goals is available and can be attached if desired
    "Common Goals" for the Developing Children and Youth Impact Area are also measured:

    1. Child demonstrates a commitment to learning
    2. Child builds character and develops positive relationships
    3. Child increases healthy lifestyle
  3. What are the organization's capabilities for doing this?
    •Five professional full-time staff
    •Two professional part-time staff
    •Interns (3 on average)
    •Volunteer mentors
    •9 volunteer board members
    •Volunteers that perform miscellaneous services (clerical, special events, etc.)
    •A facility for meetings and to conduct business
    •Referral sources
    •Partnerships with Neenah-Menasha schools
    -Collaborations (Fox Valley Technical College "Safe Zones", REACH counseling)
    •Partnerships with community businesses/organizations
    •Equipment and supplies needed to conduct business transactions and correspondence.
  4. How will they know if they are making progress?
    Indicator: % of children showing improvement in at least 67% or more of their identified areas of need as reported by the majority of input sources at the end of the school year.

    Indicators for most commonly identified goals:

    1.Child is completing and turning in homework, attending classes, wants to do well
    2.Reports that child is voicing opinions appropriately, giving input
    3.Child is on time for activities and returns phones calls
    4.Reports that child is feeling/showing more confidence
    5.Reports that child has improved social skills and getting along better with children and adults  

    Indicators for Common Goals: 

    1a.Child feels like he/she is doing better in school
    1b.Child develops a plan to get more training after high school
    2a.Child feels more prepared to resist negative peer pressure
    2b.Child receives support from a positive adult role model
    3. Child increases physical activity
  5. What have and haven't they accomplished so far?
    88.5% of children in After-School Mentoring showed improvement in at least 67% or more of their identified areas of need as reported by the majority of input sources at the end of the school year.

    9% of children showed improvement in 1 out of 3 goals
    17% of children showed improvement in 2 out of 3 goals
    71% of children showed improvement in 3 out of 3 goals

    87% of children in Lunch Mentoring showed improvement in at least 67% or more of their identified areas of need as reported by the majority of input sources at the end of the school year.

    7% of children showed improvement in 1 out of 3 goals
    24% of children showed improvement in 2 out of 3 goals
    63% of children showed improvement in 3 out of 3 goals

    83% of children in Community-Based Mentoring showed improvement in at least 67% or more of their identified areas of need as reported by the majority of input sources at each yearly anniversary for the match.

    17% of children showed improvement in 1 out of 3 goals
    29% of children showed improvement in 2 out of 3 goals
    54% of children showed improvement in 3 out of 3 goals

    Indicators for most commonly identified goals by Community-Based Mentoring children:

    1.Child is on time for activities and returns phones calls. (74%)
    2.Child feels he/she can confide in and trust mentor. (72%)
    3.Reports that child is feeling/showing more confidence. (56%)
    4. Reports that child is voicing opinions appropriately, giving input. (100%)
    5. Reports that child has improved social skills and getting along better with children and adults (70%).

    After-School Mentoring children:

    1.Child is completing and turning in homework, attending classes, wants to do well (83%)
    2.Reports that child is voicing opinions appropriately, giving input ( 88%)
    3.Child is on time for activities and returns phones calls (94%)
    4.Reports that child is feeling/showing more confidence (93%)
    5.Reports that child has improved social skills and getting along better with children and adults ( 83%)

    Lunch Mentoring children:

    1.Child is completing and turning in homework, attending classes, wants to do well (87%)
    2.Reports that child is voicing opinions appropriately, giving input ( 73%)
    3.Child is on time for activities and returns phones calls (84%)
    4.Reports that child is feeling/showing more confidence (89%)
    5.Reports that child has improved social skills and getting along better with children and adults ( 81%)

    Indicators for Common Goals:
    Target: 70% Actual for Community-Based Mentoring

    1a.Child feels like he/she is doing better in school. (86%)
    1b.Child develops a plan to get more training after high school (59%)
    2a.Child feels more prepared to resist negative peer pressure (68%)
    2b.Child receives support from a positive adult role model (95%)
    3. Child increases physical activity (54%)

    For more information, please contact use directly, there is limited room to share our logic model and results. We would be happy to share more information with you. 920-729-5600
Service Areas

Self-reported

Wisconsin

Best Friends of Neenah-Menasha serves children and families primarily located in the Neenah and Menasha area.

Funding Needs

Best Friends of Neenah-Menasha is in need of building its human and financial capacity to meet the rising needs of our clients.

Affiliations + Memberships

Association of Fundraising Professionals - Member

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Financials

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

Best Friends of Neenah-Menasha Inc
Fiscal year: Jan 01-Dec 31
Yes, financials were audited by an independent accountant.

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Operations

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

Best Friends of Neenah Menasha Inc

Leadership

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  • Board Chair, Board Co-Chair and Board Members
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Principal Officer

Dawn M. Gohlke

BIO

Education

2002 University of Wisconsin – Whitewater Whitewater, WI

MBA, Masters of Business Administration with an emphasis in Strategic Management
Graduated Magna Cum Laude

1996 University of Wisconsin – La Crosse La Crosse, WI

BS, Bachelors of Science in History with a minor in Sociology

Professional Experience

2005-Present Best Friends of Neenah-Menasha Neenah, WI
Executive Director

2002 – 2005 Big Brothers Big Sisters of Green County Monroe, WI
Executive Director

STATEMENT FROM THE Principal Officer

"Best Friends of Neenah-Menasha has been serving at-risk children in Neenah and Menasha since 1973.  If you wish to learn more about our organization please do not hesitate to call us or visit us at www.bestfriendsnm.org. "

Governance

BOARD CHAIR

Mr. Jeff Williams

Kimberly-Clark Corporation

Term: Jan 2016 - Dec 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

Yes

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?

Yes

CEO OVERSIGHT

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

Yes

ETHICS & TRANSPARENCY

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

Yes

BOARD COMPOSITION

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

Yes

BOARD PERFORMANCE

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