Goal Card Program

by Rise Foundation, Inc.

With your support of RISE, we will continue to motivate and encourage our youth to push beyond adversities, set achievable goals and use every talent bestowed upon them to make positive outcomes.

Chris exemplifies how to change your mindset to be optimistic and extend your creativity for the good. The RISE family salutes Chris, a recent college graduate and alumni Goal Card participant, for overcoming challenges and breaking barriers. Chris, the kid with no college acceptance letter and no scholarship offers, has proven to all the naysayers and most importantly, himself and family, that he isn't just a slim, unassuming kid with no drive, focus and dedication—he is now a college graduate.

RISE’s original Goal Card school had been identified as the national contest winner of the 2011 Commencement Challenge, all thanks to Chris, a RISE Goal Card Participant at the time, who charmed our U.S. President Barack Obama in a video submission. Chris was chosen to introduce the President at commencement, surpassing the valedictorian and salutatorian. 

Now, five years from that moment, Chris has turned the tassel again, this time becoming the first college graduate in his immediate family to receive his Bachelor of Arts in Sociology.

Chris said that if he had to do it all over again, he wouldn’t do anything differently “No, I wouldn’t change a thing! Honestly, I couldn’t have scripted what I did any better. Although I came up without the guidance of my dad, I had positive influences from RISE and from my neighborhood that helped to provide hope and direction. All that led to me being the person I have become and doing the things that I have been blessed to experience and accomplish, so I’m good!”

Help us to continue our work and mentor and motivate our youth.  We currently serve over 700 children and with your help with can continue to make dreams realities. The more you give, the more RISE's Goal Card program can expand its reach to serve more youth in the Memphis community.  

RISE Goal Card Student
RISE Goal Card Student

Thanks so much if you decide to support or will be providing continued support of RISE's Goal Card Program.  The generosity of donors has helped us transform the lives of many low-income students.  Lil’ Charles is a perfect example of how just a little encouragement transformed his life in a positive way after a tragic experience. 

Just a few semesters ago, Lil’ Charles grandmother, who's raising him, expressed deep concern over his low academic performance. His grandmother asked the school for help but his teachers didn't think that he was capable of moving to the next grade last year. He was also threatened to be expelled from school because he fought other students who teased him about his family situation.  The grandmother who knew about the Goal Card program, enrolled him inspite of the teacher’s prognosis.  She also enrolled him in a neighborhood charter school and the rest of the story is history.  Lil’ Charles got off to a super start this school year by displaying extraordinary academic progress in each of his classes -- so much that he has made the honor role for the past two nine-week grading periods. His grandmother proudly tells people that “he is not doomed to be on the short yellow bus but is now running and leaping to prepare himself to attend college in the future!" 

Lil’ Charles has had to overcome some serious challenges.  During his time of academic transition, his mother passed away and he suffered a period of tremendous grief.  But he has since channeled his energy in a direction of scholastic aptitude and success in the classroom.  We are immensely proud of Lil’ Charles' hard work and dedication. .

RISE can continue to help other students like Lil Charles with your generosity through GlobalGiving. Joins us and be a part of helping to encourage a child to be the best that he can be. Your financial support can make more stories like Lil Charles' have a Wonderful, Happy Ending

 Goal Card member Ariel, a rising ninth grader, announcedwas goint to be able to attend the high school of her dreams. Like many the students at her Junior High School, she wants to continue to add to a long legacy of high scholastic standards, especially when it comes to academic achievement. Her sights were not only on high school, but how she could score as high as possible on the ACT  She needed a high score so that she could qualify for scholarships in order to attend the college the college of her dreams as well.  

This past spring, Ariel and several of her classmates performed extremely well on the ACT college entrance exam. With an overall composite score of 22 out of 36, she has attracted the attention of more than a hand full of top brass colleges and universities across the nation, including Duke University, which extended her a special invitation to  attend summer classes at the prestigious institution. Her parents were able to pay a small portion of the cost but she needed community support to make this portion of her dream come true.

The RISE foundation, as always, was in full support of outstanding students such as Ariel!!! So RISE, very quickly, raised the remaining balance of funds that she needed to help cover the cost of the summer academic program at Duke.  Ariel was able to study Nanotechnologythe branch of technology that deals with dimensions and tolerances of less than 100 nanometers, especially the manipulation of individual atoms and molecules. Now most people would say Nanotechnology?  What's that?  Ariel not only knows what it is, but studied the subject area over the summer. This is something that most people in her neighborhood would never  dream of studying.  

“Way to Go, Ariel, keep up the great work!” We at the RISE Foundation wish her and all the Goal Card students well this academic year.  We can help engage and motivate them to do the best that they can so that College can move from being a dream to being a reality. Successful students like Ariel can continue to flourish in the RISE Goal Card Program with your support.  With your donations, we can serve more students like Ariel in the community.  

Brian - Goal Card Graduate
Brian - Goal Card Graduate

The best way to share the impact  of the Goal Card program is to look at what  happens after the students leave the program.  We are proud of all of our graduates, but the program is of no value unless it leads students to finish high school and enter post-Secondary  education.  Brian is one of those Goal Card stories that we would love to share with you:

Goal Card Scholar: Brian

Status: Currently a rising junior at Morehouse College (Atlanta, GA)

School: STAX Soulsville Charter School Graduate--2013

Highlights: National Honors Society Member--2011

Term: Goal Card Member (7 years)

Brian enrolled in the Goal Card program when the program was in its infancy stage at College Park. As one of the longest standing members of the Goal Card, he and his dad (Byron) are firm believers of the program’s philosophy and know from first-hand experience what the program can provide for students who participate fully.

Brian has adjusted well to college life and looks to begin his junior year at Morehouse College in Atlanta, Georgia. He carriers a solid B+ average into his third year and that is quiet impressive for a first-generation college student.

As a highly motivated individual, Brian is driven to succeed in life. Even in college, he continues to work inside as well as outside of the classroom by helping others and donating time to community service projects. Brian is majoring in business and has a strong interest in computer programming and information technology. Brian has returned home for the summer break and is presently working as an intern at Federal Express. He has personally shared with staff that his time in the Goal Card program helped motivate him to want more out of life than just a weekly paying job - Brian wants a career! 

Brian is an example of how your contribution is important and it is truly making a difference in the lives of inner city youth.  The more you give, the more RISE's Goal Card program can expand its reach to serve more youth in the Memphis community.

J Porter
J Porter

Goal Card Student J Porter truly exemplifies what it means to be a RISER (This is the expectation and goal of every Goal Card student).  He has worked diligently to achieve his goals, including good grades, conduct and attendance.  Goal Card has been a support for his  efforts that have produced successful outcomes.

As a Melrose High School student, J Porter earned multiple academic awards and honors.  He scored a 27 on the ACT exam, which led to scholarship offers from colleges near and far. While at Melrose, he served as senior class president and president of the National Honor Society. As a Goal Card participant, J Porter consistently displayed a positive attitude and a can-do approach to academic tasks. We know those attributes will carry him a long ways in his next chapter as a college student.

Congratulations goes to J Porter! He serves as an example of what Goal Card students can do if they take advantage of the opportunities available at their school, community and of course, the Goal Card Program!

We currently have 700+ students enrolled in five Goal Card sites in our area.  With your support, we can continue to create 700 more positive stories like J Porter, and you can be a part of their success!  


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Organization Information

Rise Foundation, Inc.

Location: Memphis, TN - USA
Website: http:/​/​www.risememphis.org/​
Project Leader:
Linda Williams
Memphis, Tennessee United States
$1,159 raised of $50,000 goal
28 donations
$48,841 to go
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