Positive influences and role models in a young child’s life can go a long way in grooming them to be productive and responsible adults. The Emerging Light Foundation (“ELF”) is committed to doing just that by enhancing the lives of children and families by providing them compassion, support, education and mentorship through real relationships that gives individuals the tools to succeed. Christopher Jahng is the Youth Director and volunteer coordinator for ELF.
Chris explains that Emerging Light Foundation is a non-profit organization that opened in May 2008, and is based in Los Angeles County, California. Emerging Light Foundation’s objective is to provide support services for youths (ages 13 – 21) in surrounding communities of all backgrounds and circumstances by creating real relationships to fill real needs. By creating these mentoring relationships with volunteer adults, youths can get guidance and develop self-esteem through instruction, tutoring, career development, vocational training, training for independent living, and other related services. These services are designed to improve educational performance, personal achievement, and build better futures. The Emerging Light Foundation partners with the Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS), local communities, schools and churches in providing these services to all youths. Due to their partnerships, ELF is able to reach out and collaborate with schools, communities, foster families and group homes of all ethnicities to create free youth clubs where these relationships can be built.
Emerging Light Foundation is an entirely volunteer run and operated organization. ELF currently runs 5 local youth clubs with over 200 individuals year-round in Long Beach, Inglewood, Hawaiian Gardens/Lakewood and Compton to provide a fun and safe environment where teens and kids can come and learn, have fun, dine and create authentic and productive relationships with adults that are energetic, caring, dedicated and interested in positive mentoring.
Emerging Light Foundation also provides educational scholarships to help motivated youths face adulthood and college with support, accountability and hope. Scholarships are offered to youths primarily from the youth clubs, where growth and education are real goals. Christopher stated he is so passionate about the program because, “ELF is about positive relationships that fill real needs and it is not about the program. You have to care about the youth first.” Christopher’s proudest moment is when the youths go off to college and return to mentor their peers.
If you or your organization is interested in partnering with ELF you may do so by the following:
·Financial Partner – You may donate at any time and also allocate your donations specifically to benefit a program, event or individual(s).
·Event Partner – Serve the youth! You can help ELF by throwing an event, or collaborate with them in creating an event or program. You can provide a host location, job opportunities, internships, resources, donations, gifts for kids, and much more.
To find out more about The Emerging Light Foundation (“ELF”) or to volunteer please visit their website at www.emerginglightfoundation.org.
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