Catheline has been on the Advisory Board since June 2016 and is currently a part of the fundraising committee. She is currently the Director of Customer Success at an advertising technology company called Rocket Fuel. She has been managing media planning and buying across a number of industries including retail, financial services, gaming, technology and consumer packaged goods. Catheline has a passion for leveraging her marketing background to drive awareness for social enterprises along with supporting local organizations like CommunityGrows.
What attracted you to CommunityGrows?: CG’s focus on teaching local youth how to make an impact on their lives and others by making better choices about food/nutrition and the environment.
What are your outside interests? I love to play basketball, rock climb and teach ice skating.
What book are you reading or a book that inspired you? The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho and The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls.
What is your favorite vegetable or fruit? Honeydew, the most underrated fruit in a fruit salad.
Any words of wisdom or word that you live by? “The reasonable man adapts himself to the world: the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore all progress depends on the unreasonable man.” – ~ George Bernard Shaw
Thursday, May 4, 2017 the Fall-Spring BEETS Cohort graduated. The CommunityGrows staff celebrated the past eight months of their accomplishments with a slide show and BBQ in Koshland Garden. The BEETS program is a stipended, hands-on, outdoor learning experience that provides roughly 20 youth each year with life skills and job-readiness training. The program aims to help youth live healthier lives and build skills for successful futures, with the goals that youth will: learn to make positive choices in their lives, in their community, and for their environment; acquire job skills to prepare for the workforce and futures; and develop supportive relationships with adults and peers.The new model we launched for this cohort in October 2016 lengthened the BEETS program over the academic year and focused on a project learning component. It was a year of growth and adventure for these eight young adults. During the fall, the BEETS completed workshops and trainings on garden maintenance, soil knowledge, planting methods and water conservation. They also completed a ropes course together, bonding and practicing trust and teamwork. They also learned more about food access and justice-particularly the importance of communities having access to fresh, affordable and nutritious food.The learning component scheduled for this cohort allowed the BEETS to work with residents at Plaza East, a subsidized housing community in the Western Addition, to create patio gardens and garden care guides. This project was also an opportunity to explore incorporating a revenue generating component into the program. They learned how to build container gardens from a horticulturalist and entrepreneur who owns her own landscaping company in San Francisco.
There have been positive results in changing up the BEETS Program with an extended period. The BEETS have been able to expand and deepen their learning about gardening, the environment and nutrition; their relationships with each other and staff have grown stronger; and they have expressed appreciation for the increased earning power and financial literacy. With consistent earnings they have been able to create and follow personal budgets which they check throughout the year. The project-based learning component has expanded their job skills, improving their resume and their real-world work experience, and given them a sense of ownership and pride within the community. We also anticipate that the longer time will strengthened their resume and make them more competitive in the workforce post-program. Base on a mid-point survey, 100% of our current cohort thinks they are learning valuable life skills through the program and 100% of participants apply what they learn through the program outside of the program at least once a week. “This session is better [than the shorter session] because I’m closer to the BEETS and this time I was able to achieve my goals because we had more time to work on them,” Barry, a second year BEET said.Cultural relevancy is vital to the work we do. Indeed it is the only way to support low-income and youth of color in San Francisco who are continually displaced from their homes and neighborhoods. For many of the youth we serve, the “environment” is distant, distinct from their everyday lives and concerns. We work to help youth feel safe and welcome outdoors by co-creating and maintaining green spaces in their neighborhoods and connecting them to other youth who look like them and also care about the environment. Our goal is for the teens to connect physically with the outdoors as they learn how they can combat environmental and food injustices which disproportionately impact their bodies and communities. Thank you also to Jaromy Siemers and Liz Holm from our Advisory Board for joining us in celebrating the BEETS!
On Wednesday, November 16, 2016 CommunityGrows Advisory Board hosted an evening of fun and games at Joey-the-Cat in the Mission District of San Francisco. Thanks to our sponsors Avila and Associates and Kaiser-Permanente, we enjoyed a great night of skeeball, pinball, hoops, ping-pong, air-ball, and Wack-a-Mole and raised money to support CommunityGrows. We munched on goodies from Front Porch and Sugar and Spun, as well as wine from Plumpjack, Fort Point Brewery, Stag Dining Group and Souther Pacific Brewing Company. Folks lined up to have their photos taken at our Garden Booth. There were skeeball competitions and lots of great conversations throughout the night. Guests were treated to a welcome by Advisory Board Co-Chair, Casey Johnson, and Barbara Wenger, Executive Director, and also included a video of CommunityGrows and shout-out from Ziek McCarter, Garden Educator and lead singer of the band Con Brio. A raffle of terrific items including dinner at State Bird and the Boxing Club, as well as a stay at the Monterey Tides Hotel rounded out the excitement of the evening. A great time had by all, young and old. Congratulation to our Advisory Board for working so hard, inviting their friends and making the evening a great success!
On Wednesday evening, March 3, 2016 the Union Square Hilton was buzzing with potential Board candidates who can to talk with over 100 non-profits. This event was sponsored by the Volunteer Center. CommunityGrows Advisory Board members Jaromy Schmidt, Leah Cerri and Meredith Pavia, along with Development consultant Cheryl Clarke helped to anchor the table, and greet interested candidates. It was a noisy crowded night and we managed to log in nineteen potential candidates. These candidates have been invited to connect with individual Advisory Board members and check out our programs at CommunityGrows. Here is the job description we handed out for potential candidates, in case you are interested. Please send your resume and bio to Barbara Wenger at firstname.lastname@example.org. We are particularly interested in candidates who have served on other boards and are capable of making good network connections and a financial contribution.
AB JobDescription by blwenger