The Friendship Club

CNL Member since 2003

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Founded: 1995

The Friendship Club engages, educates, and empowers girls at risk

– to empower girls to succeed in school and complete their education

– to empower girls to become confident, independent and self-sufficient

– to  teach girls the skills and the importance of a healthy lifestyle

– to involve girls in volunteerism and give them the leadership skills to become responsible, contributing members of their community

The Friendship Club receives 85% of its support from individuals and business owners and 15% from private grants.

Clients Served:

The Friendship Club serves 100 girls annually between the ages of 11-18 in
Western Nevada County. Girls join The Friendship Club as they are entering
the sixth grade and are encouraged to remain in the program through 12th grade.

How CNL has helped our organization:
A couple years ago The Friendship Club Volunteer Committee attended Recruiting and Retaining Today’s Volunteers, presented by Betty Stallings. Our committee was made up of board and community members and our Volunteer Coordinator. Betty was agreat presenter – she energized us and gave us many ideas. Within just a few days we were implementing what we learned and had created a Volunteer Philosophy that is now on a plaque in our office entry. Volunteers are extremely important to TFC, anything we can learn about recruiting, retaining and appreciating our volunteers helps us to better serve our girls.

I have attended quite a few CNL workshops as a board member of The Friendship Club. We value these workshops enough to have included attending one CNL workshop per year in our Board Agreement. I feel we have all gotten valuable knowledge and insight from attending. Personally, I have grown tremendously. After taking Kimberly Parker’s How to Ask for Money Without Fainting back in 2004, I did start thinking that perhaps I really could do that. When I felt ready I went to Indiana University’s Fund Raising School. This has led to me be capable of being more effective in my board position. CNL’s workshops have given me the nudge to move to the next level.

A Friendship Club Success Story:

Michelle Schmidt

Michelle Schmidt never thought she’d live to see 17. Her parents divorced when she was in third grade. Three years later, her mother announced she didn’t want to be part of Michelle’s life any longer and simply left. Schmidt and her father then lived homeless and out of hotel rooms. Her situation seemed hopeless until her aunt intervened.

“By that time, I was severely depressed and failing all my classes. I didn’t care about anything,” Schmidt says. “I didn’t have the desire to live. I didn’t think anyone would care about me.”

Today Michelle is 24, a graduate of California Baptist University in Riverside and working for Boeing Co. She’s also attending graduate school at Chapman University in Southern California as a prelude to law school or doctoral studies. She credits all this to her aunt’s involvement and a special organization called the Friendship Club.

“They showed that they cared for me, that they were there to support me and wanted to work with me to help me get my life in order,” Schmidt says. “That just changed my world, and I realized the kind of person I wanted to be.”