UPT StreetLeaders & Charles Dickens

         On Christmas Eve, Ebenezer Scrooge is visited by the ghost of his former business partner Jacob Marley. It had been seven years to the day since Scrooge had seen Marley, for Scrooge was the sole mourner at Marley’s funeral. So, when his old business partner came calling from the great beyond, Scrooge’s reaction was uncharacteristic: he listened. Marley quipped, “Mankind was my business. The common welfare was my business; charity, mercy, forbearance, benevolence, were all my business.” This lesson is as timely in 2018 America as it was in 1843 Britain; a lesson the UPT StreetLeaders have been wrestling with since early November.
         The StreetLeaders of UrbanPromise Trenton have been reading Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol in preparation for an intergenerational discussion of the 19th century holiday classic at the Cranbury Public Library. Our Literary Clubs encourage students to analyze texts they read and to consider choices they would make if they were the protagonists in these stories, all to support reading as foundational to learning success.
         The responsibilities of a UPT StreetLeader include mentoring and tutoring 1st– 8th graders, maintaining a cumulative GPA of an 80 or above, receiving no less than a B in each class, and participating in extra-curricular activities like Film and Literary Club, quarterly trainings, professional development and the TrentonTrekker Program. For StreetLeaders, their academic day begins at 8AM and ends 10 hours later at 6PM. That’s a pretty long day by any measure!
         As we celebrate our StreetLeaders and Literary Clubs this Christmas, UPT is planning Christmas parties for the students; and we are inviting our friends and family to contribute. Funds raised will be used to purchase gifts, including books, sweaters and sweatshirts, to provide college scholarships for our seniors and undergraduate students, and to underwrite expeditionary and experiential learning field trips in the winter and spring.
        Please consider contributing to either the Literary Clubs of UPT or the StreetLeader Program. We are working to raise a total of $5,000.  You can donate HERE at whatever level is comfortable for you.
        If you have never read A Christmas Carol, it’s an inspirational tale, and, while we won’t spoil the whole story for you, we can tell you that Scrooge has a big change of heart, and that makes all the difference for him, and everyone who knows him.
       We appreciate your support, at whatever level is comfortable for you. Each gift helps us to celebrate the wonderful young adults who are part of our StreetLeader team!
       Thank you, and have a blessed holiday!
Michael Lovaglio
Program Director