"Education is not the filing of a pail, but the lighting of a fire." -William Butler Yeats
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Monday, November 27, 2017

‘Tis the Season…

      …to be thankful! Last Thursday was Thanksgiving, the beginning of the holiday season and the perfect time to meditate on the many blessings of this life. Here are a few of our favorite things that The Brandon Foundation is extremely grateful for.
  • Our loving God who sent His Son to Earth to save us
  • Miss Caty, our fearless leader
  • Our scholars for choosing to become Christian leaders of their community
    • Aaliyah, Auntral, Darrell, DeAundre, Deijah, DJ, Edyn, Elijah, Ethann, Isaiah, Josh, Malakhi, Medina, Noel, Saphia and Shawnn Michael
  • Our mentors
  • The parents and loved ones of our scholars who guide them in their daily lives
  • Our Board of Directors
  • Our Corporate Sponsors
    • BKD: CPAs & Advisors, Fox Contractors  Corp, Lawrence Building Company, Lee’s Famous Recipe Chicken, Northside Plumbing & Heating, Sweeney Law Firm
  • Schools and teachers who help us to learn and grow every day
  • Donors, supporters, and volunteers who make The Brandon Foundation possible
  • The opportunity to apply to grants and for those that provide them
    • 3Rivers Federal Credit Union and RMSM Foundation
  • Speakers and guests who lead many fun activities at The B Foundation
  • St. Henry’s Community Center
  • Prayer circle
  • Snack time
  • Recess and playing with friends
  • Books and the abilities to learn and read
  • Our hometown and community, Fort Wayne
  • The gifts and talents that God has blessed us with
  • The many local churches that families of The Brandon Foundation attend
  • Summer camps and sports programs, along with the new friendships and adventures they bring
  • The seasons and the beautiful changes of nature
  • The holidays and the time we spend together with family and friends
  • The opportunity to serve our community through volunteer work
  • The St. Francis football players who mentor our scholars
  • The opportunity to explore our interests and Deijah’s day of shadowing at the prosecutor’s office
  • Learning about kindness and gratitude
  • Journaling and the opportunity for reflection
  • The Colts and Pacers and those who donated tickets so that our scholars could attend games
  • The 5th year of The Brandon Foundation
  • All of our #GivingTuesday donors
      What are you most thankful for this holiday season?
      Thank you for reading!
      Abby Bormann & The Brandon Foundation

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Coming Soon: An Evening to Empower 2018

Every two years in May, The Brandon Foundation hosts An Evening to Empower, dinner and auction, to increase awareness and support for the growing needs of underserved children in the Fort Wayne community. During this event, we take time to recognize and celebrate the accomplishments of our students.  This is also an evening to show our gratitude and appreciation for our corporate and individual sponsors, volunteers, parents and the countless others who have made our mission possible. It takes a whole community to show students the power of their potential socially and academically.

WHAT: An Evening to Empower, The Brandon Foundation’s 3rd dinner and auction fundraising event

WHEN: Saturday, May 19th, 2018

WHERE: IPFW’s Walb International Ballroom

WHO: We would like YOU to be part of the 2018 Evening to Empower to support and celebrate The Brandon Foundation and our students. Share the excitement with some friends while you’re at it!

If you would like to become an event sponsor, make an in kind donation, or purchase a table, please email Rebecca Bormann, President of the Board of Directors, at rebeccab262@gmail.com. You can also contact Rebecca if you would like to be a part of the planning committee.

We're still in the early planning phases, but we’ll have more details in the coming months!

Hope to see you there!

Abby Bormann & The Brandon Foundation

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Creating a Climate of Kindness

What would the world look like if instead of meanness, inconsideration and violence there was only kindness, compassion and thoughtfulness? We’re far from that place right now, but there are people all over the world looking to make a change. One such group created a competition, or as they like to say a “coopetition” (a cooperative competition). It’s called the Compassion Games: Survival of the Kindest, and The Brandon Foundation is jumping in during the month of October.

Here’s how it works:

1. Individuals or teams sign up here.
2. Participants organize service projects, inspire and perform acts of kindness and focus on giving back to their community.
3. After completing acts of kindness, participants report on their activities, and the Compassion Report Map tracks all of the details.
4. Share and celebrate to start a chain reaction of kindness in the community!

The goal of the compassion games is to unify communities, amplify kind works that are already happening, catalyze community engagement, quantify experiences and impact, and actualize to grow the movement!

For now, our scholars will be observing their local community and how they might make a change with acts of kindness. After fall break, the game is on! I can’t wait to hear how it goes!

Check out how the Compassion Games have started to make a difference in other communities! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zZLGHZ1lSjU

By the way, we're in the early stages of planning for the 2018 Dinner & Auction, and we're looking for sponsors. If you'd like to contribute or have any questions, please contact Rebecca Bormann at rebeccab262@gmail.com.

Thank you for reading!
Abby Bormann & The Brandon Foundation

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

A “Summery” of the Sunshine Season

The Brandon Foundation’s 5th school year will be starting in just a few short weeks. Where does the time go?! Scholars, mentors and our board members have all been busy this summer. Read on for a peak at what we’ve been up to!

Some of our scholars went to summer camps. Medina, Aaliyah, and Edyn attended a new camp this year, Camp Jameson in Indianapolis. They swam, went on adventures and had a fun-filled week meeting new friends. DJ and Deaundre developed their hoop skills at McCracken Basketball Camp. The 55 year old organization emphasizes fun and helps each player to become the best athlete that he or she can possibly be! While DJ and Deaundre were out on the courts, Josh played football with Midwest Swagger Football Camp.

Our scholars are quickly maturing and becoming community leaders! Dejiah, who will be starting her junior year of high school in the coming weeks, had a job this summer at a local daycare. There, she was able to put into practice the skills that she developed as a junior mentor to one of our younger scholars during the 2016-17 school year. She also had a wonderful opportunity to shadow in the Fort Wayne prosecutor’s office and has been invited to return next summer for a full internship!

We also walked in the Three Rivers Festival Parade, for the fifth consecutive year. Every year, our group in the parade gets a little bigger. This year, 40 people walked with The Brandon Foundation float! There were scholars, mentors, board members and lots of family out supporting us. The theme for the parade was SUPERHEROES! Miss Caty designed our t-shirts this year and reminded us all that “not all superheroes wear capes.”  Ordinary people, following in Jesus’ ways, can save the world one kind, loving action at a time.

We can’t wait to see what’s in store for the 2017-2018 school year!

Thank you for reading!

Abby Bormann & The Brandon Foundation

Monday, May 22, 2017

We're Almost There!

It’s mid-May; summer is on the horizon! This time of year, two big things are happening for The Brandon Foundation. The school year (and weekly TBF sessions) is wrapping up, and our fundraising campaign is drawing to a close. In case you were wondering what’s up on these fronts, here’s a little update:

Last week at the foundation, our scholars created scrapbooks to remember their favorite and proudest moments of the year and to remember what they’ve learned. Here are few pages from their year.

In other news, we have just over a week until the end of our fundraising campaign. We’re off to a great start with over $20,000 dollars raised. Thank you, from the bottom of our hearts, for all of your support from individual donors to corporate sponsors! Your contributions are helping our scholars’ dreams come true. That’s why at The Brandon Foundation you’re known as a Dream Maker. We know that there are many incredible organizations to donate money and time to and appreciate each and every contribution! Below are our corporate sponsors and some of our top donors that we want to say an extra special thank you to!

AIS Consulting
BKD – CPAs & Advisors
The Kuzmic Family
Lawrence Building
RMSM Foundation
Sweeney Law Firm
Three Rivers Federal Credit Union

Please prayerfully consider making a contribution, if you have not already done so, to help us reach our goal of $30,000 in support of our scholars for the next school year!

Thank you for reading!
Abby Bormann & The Brandon Foundation

Saturday, April 8, 2017

Springtime at The Brandon Foundation

Spring is in the air, and exciting things are happening for The Brandon Foundation! This week, we kicked off the 2017 fundraising campaign AND launched a website. While all of this was going on behind the scenes, our scholars volunteered at Lutheran Life Village for our monthly service project and have been writing letters to students going through similar life situations.

Our goal for fundraising this year is $30,000 by June 1st. These funds will be used in three areas: operational costs, resource improvement and the college scholarship fund. In total, nearly 75% of the funds raised will go directly to our scholars. In addition to covering the costs of day to day programming and operating for the 2017-2018 school year, these funds will ensure that every Brandon Foundation scholar has: school supplies, school shoes, a winter coat and boots, the ability to attend extracurricular activities and a summer camp, as well as other essentials as the needs arise. Currently, The Brandon Foundation has 2 computers available for use by students for research and school projects. As part of our resource improvement plan, we will purchase a laptop for each scholar for our classroom. In the current digital age, it is imperative that students are exposed to the many aspects of technology and begin to learn the skills that will be necessary in the workplaces of the future. Lastly, a portion of the funds raised will contribute to our college scholarship fund. This year, we have four scholars in high school, and we want to empower them each to continue their education and provide financial aid.

After months of working closely with Brittany King, a local web developer and digital content specialist, we have unveiled a brand new website, https://thebrandonfoundation.org! Here, you can find information about the history of The Brandon Foundation, how you can become involved or make a donation, or read about what’s happening recently with the organization.

Meanwhile, our scholars have been serving the older and the younger of their communities. For our March service project, we went to Lutheran Life Village to visit elderly residents. We played games, made root beer floats, and brought cheer to all involved. As a more personal project, our scholars have been writing letters to anonymous students who are going through a tough time in their lives. We are learning how the pain we go through in life can be turned into power to reach and change others’ live. Scholars write encouraging notes which are handed out weekly by teachers. Sometimes hearing (or reading) “you’re not alone” in what you’re going through is exactly what’s needed. Our students are realizing that by showing vulnerability in their struggles, they can help to heal others.

To make a contribution to the 2017 fundraising campaign, follow this link and select “Donate Now”: https://thebrandonfoundation.org/donate/.

Thank you for reading!
Abby Bormann & The Brandon Foundation

Thursday, March 9, 2017

What It Means to Be a Mentor

Last month we shared what some of our scholars had to say about how being a part of The Brandon Foundation has affected them. This month, we bring you a few words from 4 of our mentors about what it means to them to be involved with The Brandon Foundation.

Miss Caty, Founder and Executive Director
Mentee: Isaiah

How/why did you become a mentor with TBF?
I became a mentor because I wanted to help kids realize their potential and achieve their goals.

What makes TBF a special organization?
Every single student! I love my time with Isaiah and how he listens when I give him advice. I REALLY love to serve on Saturdays, too. Watching them become leaders has been an incredible part of this journey.

What is your favorite thing about being involved with TBF or your favorite activity?
Getting to know each student’s dream and helping them get to figure out how to make it happen.
DeAundre: 1st play
Dejiah: Visit Indiana tech
Darrell and Khi: play soccer

Miss Tara, Board of Directors Treasurer
Mentee: De’Aundre

How/why did you become a mentor with TBF?
Miss Caty told me about her goals and dreams for the foundation in the beginning stages and asked if I would be interested in being a mentor.

What makes TBF a special organization?
The mentors and students build strong relationships. TBF finds each student’s strengths and interests and nurtures individuality and leadership.

What is your favorite thing about being involved with TBF or your favorite activity?
My favorite thing is seeing the kids each week, and I love listening to what students write during journaling.

Mr. Abdul
Mentee: Dejiah

How/why did you become a mentor with TBF?
I wanted to give back to the community. Miss Caty came to my college and talked about TBF, and I’ve wanted to help with the progress ever since.

What makes TBF a special organization?
I feel that the students make this place special. Their different personalities make this place unique.

What is your favorite thing about being involved with TBF or your favorite activity?
I like being able to meet up with my student on a weekly basis. This place helps me feel that I am needed and loved.

Miss Kelly
Mentee: Shawnn Michael

How/why did you become a mentor with TBF?
I became a mentor because I knew some other mentors, and they loved it. So, I decided to see what it was about. I immediately loved it, and it means the world to me to help the kids. I recently got a tattoo of The Brandon Foundation’s logo as a lifetime reminder of how the organization has impacted my life.

What makes TBF a special organization?
TBF is special because not only do we help the children with their homework, but we also try to teach them about being upstanding Christians and that even though they are young, they can give back to the community and make a difference in the world.

What is your favorite thing about being involved with TBF or your favorite activity?

My favorite thing about being involved with the foundation is helping the kids.

Thank you for reading!
Abby Bormann & The Brandon Foundation

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Sunday, February 12, 2017

And Now…A Word from Our Scholars

In the fall, you heard a lot about what The Brandon Foundation does and is. To start out 2017, I wanted to offer some perspective about what The Brandon Foundation means to our scholars and mentors. With that, I leave you to read a few words from our scholars.

An Interview with Aaliyah and Edyn

What is your favorite activity at The Brandon Foundation?
Aaliyah: Inspirational videos at the end of The Brandon Foundation

Edyn: Service projects because I feel like I’m doing something good. My favorite service project was the first one I did, with Kids Against Hunger.

What is the most important thing you’ve learned at The Brandon Foundation?
A: Learning about God.

E: Don’t let anyone stop you from achieving your goals and dreams. I dream of becoming an actress and traveling the world before I leave this world.

Aaliyah, what are your goals?
A: My dream is to become a vet. My short-term goal is to continue to achieve Honor Roll and to exceed the expectations for Honor Roll.

Who was your favorite speaker and why?
A & E: The Christian rapper Mickey Young was their favorite guest speaker because people doubted him and told him he couldn’t become a successful Christian rapper, but he kept going and grew his career how he wanted to.

What is a new experience that you’ve been able to have because of The Brandon Foundation?
E: I got to try karate at The Brandon Foundation, and afterwards I joined a karate class. I liked the self-defense aspect of it.

A: I enjoyed trying sculpting and step dancing for the first time.

Survey responses from De’Aundre and Isaiah

What is the most important thing you’ve learned at TBF?
I learned about hard work and dedication.

What is your favorite thing to do at TBF?
Bonding with my mentor

Who was your favorite speaker?
Christian rapper Mickey Young aka Deven Bridges

What is the most important thing you’ve learned at TBF?
I learned to dream big and keep working hard. This is important to me so that I won’t end up like my father.

What is your favorite thing to do at TBF?
My favorite thing is talking to my mentor because she gives me wisdom.

Who was your favorite speaker?
I don’t know; I guess all of them.

Come back in March to read about our mentors!

Thank you for reading!
Abby Bormann & The Brandon Foundation