• Mission: The mission of Jeremiah’s Promise is to love, challenge and equip transition-age foster youth for a life they can be proud of. The nonprofit organization promotes academic resilience, personal and social skills building, leadership development and career path competency.
• 2018 update: Jeremiah’s Promise uses an innovative social media-behavioral intelligence platform to serve its foster youth.
“It acts much like a navigation system that applies daily wisdom for youth to achieve measurable and sustainable breakthroughs in school, work and life,” said Kim Golter, founder and CEO of the 15-year-old agency. “We call the program The Next Step. It guides teens and young adults through steps each day that help them achieve a specific goal.
Golter said the “isoCourses” encourage youth to do the “one thing that for that person will increase their confidence, outsmart their challenges and eventually will equip them with a plan to achieve their broader life and career goals.”
To motivate each other, youth post through the social media part of the platform.
“Our comments to each individual are confidential, but they can share as much of their own results as they want to share,” Golter added.
Youth complete the action-based steps through a laptop, desktop, tablet or smartphone. A free isodoit mobile app is also available.
“Because of ease of use and relatability of the topics, foster and at-risk youth nationwide are engaging,” Golter said.
In addition, Jeremiah’s Promise works with mentors from other agencies to prepare them for the rigors of mentoring the complex youth demographic. Mentors complete the isoCourses and then use The Next Step as a structured, interactive method to guide their own mentees.
“It’s been rewarding to see how much more relatable the mentors become when they do The Next Step for themselves. It’s an eye-opening experience for them, not to mention a little humbling,” Golter said. “Of course, we haven’t forgotten our local youth. We’re in communication with them as often as they like, and we’re available to meet for coffee or to help them move to a new place or even to help meet their most basic and urgent needs, such as groceries, for instance.”
• Why the Holiday Fund is needed: Donations enable Jeremiah’s Promise to continue serving local youth in person, online and through workshops. Contributions also allow the organization to continue The Next Step coaching program, preparing teens and young adults for the challenges and responsibilities of adulthood. Golter said she hopes to expand the ability of Jeremiah’s Promise to train mentors and nonprofit leaders to help foster and at-risk youth nationwide.
Location: PO Box 1393, Palo Alto 94302
Founded: 2000, with program launched in 2003
Annual budget: $150,000
Staff: 1 full-time employee; 10 volunteers