Buena Vista Youth Scholars Program
TUES & THURS afternoons 4:00-5:30pm located in Space #22 at 3980 El Camino Real, Palo Alto, CA 94306 (El Camino & Los Robles intersection behind the Valero gas station) Volunteers can contact Deborah Farrington at 650-575-5435 or firstname.lastname@example.org
The Buena Vista Youth Scholars Program began in September 2017 with no resources other than the good will of the residents, a few dedicated volunteers and eager young students. The Youth Scholars Program quickly become a thriving community with an average of 16 students from TK-6th grade who gather twice weekly, logging 873 hours of student learning time and 378 hours of volunteer time. Kids arrive at the Youth Scholars Program excited to see their friends and teachers, eat a snack, and do their homework. It is obvious that the Youth Scholars Program is a place of support, care, happiness, and academic and personal growth. The parents are delighted that their children receive encouragement, instruction, and thoughtful attention from professional educators and Stanford students who model the value of education and demonstrate the value of each & every child.
The Buena Vista Youth Scholars Program was established to support elementary school students living in the Buena Vista Mobile Home Park in south Palo Alto. After receiving eviction notices from their landlord in 2012, the BV community organized a Resident Association, contacted local friends and advocates who could support their cause, and undertook what turned out to be a five-year legal battle to save their homes. In the end, the Santa Clara County Housing Authority, purchased the land, thus preserving this vital affordable housing resource for ~110 families. Within this community of ~400 residents are about 40 children who attend nearby Barron Park Elementary School in the Palo Alto Unified School District. While the school offers its students an excellent education and after school resources, there remains a need to support the young children of Buena Vista. The learn more about the Buena Vista community, visit: https://ed.stanford.edu/news/scholaractivist-advocates-those-losing-out-silicon-valley-s-benefits.
Deborah Farrington, Ed.D., a local educator and a supporter of the Buena Vista residents’ activism to save their community, created the Buena Vista Youth Scholars Program to celebrate the new-found security felt within the community and to help fill the learning gap for Buena Vista’s youngest residents. The Caritas Corporation, provides new management of the Buena Vista mobile home park, and as expressed in the Caritas mission statement – Caritas endeavors to create vibrant communities where quality of life, resident involvement, and caring are priorities – offers enthusiastic support for the Buena Vista Youth Scholars Program.
The Buena Vista Youth Scholars Program offers a safe, clean space to focus on learning, get much-needed homework help, read good books, get a snack, and create a community of friends. The Youth Scholars Program offers a vital community-based resource that targets the academic achievement gap, strengthens the entire Barron Park community, and represents the very best of Palo Alto and Stanford University values. The Buena Vista Youth Scholars Program kids would love to have a more Stanford volunteers and Palo Alto residents spend an afternoon with them!