My name is Elaine and I am the Development Wintern 2021 for tSB and hold the first ever Youth Advisory board member seat on the tSBoard of Directors!
To tell you a bit about myself, I’ve been involved with tSB for the past three years, first introduced my Freshman year of high school. Actually, when I first joined tSB I had no idea what I was getting myself into. When I was recruited, there was this guy who came up to my lunch table and was so persistent in leaving the brochure at the table, even though my friends and I thought he was a tad bit weird he wouldn’t leave until we said we would consider it, so we took a brochure. After looking at the brochure and wanting to find myself a new community, I decided to sign up, and that was the best decision I ever made.
Being in tSB has really opened my eyes to new opportunities and social/environmental issues and topics that I probably would not even know about if I hadn’t joined. When I’m not immersed in the tSB scene, I’m a full time high school/running start student, I like to paint, read mystery thrillers or YA romance, and bake! This is my first blog, so I hope it wasn’t too much to read, but in the future look forward to short fun blogs!
Hey there tSB fam. Monique here. In case you have not heard, I will be leaving my role at tSB this week so pursue other opportunities. My journey as staff at tSB has been one I will never forget, and I am grateful to this community for being a part of my life. Thank you for the laughs, thank you for the support, thank you for the growth. This is an experience that has changed me for the better, and I am grateful.
To the tSB youth: Y’all are some of the coolest people on the planet! My interactions with you all challenge and inspire me in more ways than you know. Thank you all for making this job awesome!
To all of the tSB volunteers: Thank you! Your dedication to this community is so appreciated. I am grateful for your time, support, and friendship. I could not have done this role without you.
To tSB staff and the tSBoard: You are all such incredible professionals. Thank you for welcoming me to the team and supporting my growth. I miss you all already.
My transition will be a team effort, with staff and volunteers working together to ensure tSB’s program continues to run smoothly. Plans are in place and we are looking to fill this position quickly! We are hiring for a Program Manager and a part time Outreach Coordinator, so if you know any dope people, send them this way!
This certainly isn’t goodbye for me and tSB, but simply a see you later. I plan to return in many different volunteer capacities in the future. Sending you all much love, until next time.
Hey there tSB Community! So nice to see you all again.
It certainly has been one heck of a year. With all its twists and turns, surely we all have our own reflections on the past 9 months. tSB youth have certainly pushed their growing edge this year, and have shown great adaptability and commitment. Program staff checked in with some of them to learn their thoughts on some of the year’s major developments, and their hopes for the future. Keep reading for a summary of what we learned.
Starting with the ongoing pandemic. Navigating its impact has been a challenge. From getting used to wearing masks to saying bye to some of their favorite places in the city, a lot has changed and most youth agree it isn’t always fun. To be honest, spending spring and summer 2020 in the house has been a “pretty boring” experience.
From a social justice point of view, our society has faced some significant challenges this year. tSB youth have seized the opportunity to make their voices heard. Some have protested in the streets in support of Black Lives Matter, some have created websites to highlight activists in the community, and others have created online campaigns to promote wellness. Their creativity and commitment to staying involved in the community has been inspiring to witness.
As for the future, youth are hopeful for a COVID-19 vaccine and a return to normalcy. With optimism, youth (and staff) are looking forward to another great year of tSB program in 2021, even if we look a little different than usual. Whatever the future holds, the tSB community will continue to stand together to hold each other down.
Hey there tSB Community! This is Monique Taylor, tSB Program Manager, here to give a few updates about the 2020 tSB Program! The Program Team has been busy at work getting our 2020 Core Program up and running. We have a dedicated crew of prophets, peer leaders, mentors, snowboard instructors, volunteers and staff this year and we are all excited to make this year one of the best yet!
We just wrapped up an awesome retreat to start our Core Program, a big thank you to the team at Islandwood who helped make this year’s retreat possible. It was an impactful weekend full of community building and connection, and some beautiful hikes through the woods on Bainbridge Island. Next, we are gearing up to have our first day on the mountain this Saturday!
There have been many new developments on the Program Team in the last few months. First, a huge shout out and thank you to Cole Story. Cole recently stepped down as Program Manager, after two years as tSB staff. Cole has been influential in making our programs what they currently are, including leading the development of our inaugural Summer Leadership Impact Program (SLIP)! Cole will be continuing to support tSB as a Snowboard Instructor this year and we are grateful to have him around.
We also have some new hires on the program team! Carmen Berrysmith joined the tSB staff in September 2019 as our newest Program Coordinator. Carmen has been involved with tSB since she was in high school and has worn many hats across the organization! Carmen has been a Prophet, tSB Intern, Soiree Emcee, and has volunteered in many other capacities in recent years. Carmen has a ton of love for tSB and a natural talent for connecting with our youth. She has been the rock holding our programs down during recent staff transitions, and we are so excited to have her dedication and insight on the team!
I am also a new hire this year! I joined the staff as Program Manager this January 2020, and I am so appreciative to be part of the tSB fam! I have been busy learning the program and connecting with our youth and mentors. This past retreat has been my favorite part of joining tSB thus far. The support and love that exists in this community is strong. I have already gained so much from joining this community and have had a great time doing it! I look forward to deepening my connection to you all in the years to come!
What’s up tSB Community?! Cole Story, tSB Program Manager, here to recap the year, and introduce our new Program Team! What a year it’s been for tSB – new faces, some Summer fun on the coast, and a successful Soiree event, just to name a few of our big moments this year! But before we go any further, we want to give a huge shout out to Benji Anderson. Benji stepped down as Program Manager earlier this year, and we are so thankful for his leadership, commitment, individuality, and general “dopeness” that he brought to tSB, both as a mentor, and as a staff member. We can’t say enough about Benji and his impact on the community, but his ability to build community and empower youth leadership inspire our team to continue carrying the torch. Thanks to Benji, tSB is stronger than ever, and we are ready for another 23 years of youth leadership, community, and shredding the mountains!
This past year’s Core Program featured an abbreviated program, as we refocused our intentions and commitments to mentoring youth and continuing to create a tight-knit community. From building community over food, to learning, listening, and discussing topics of race, gender, sexuality, homelessness, and more, to laughing, falling, and toe-side/heel-side turns on the mountain, tSB’s core values remain the same. As we look to the future, we’re so excited to continue building on our strengths, and to let the youth lead the way! Our Peer Leader group for the upcoming Core Program is full of ambitious, active, and creative young people! Just a month and half into the Peer Leader program, and they are already forming a tight group ready to lead the way for next year’s Core Program.
Earlier this year, I was hired on as the Program and Development Coordinator, and am now the new Program Manager. Stepping on midway through this past year’s Core Program was definitely a challenge, but I was immediately met with love, community, food, and fun. My first Wednesday Program night focused on self care. We rotated through stations that included free drawing, breakdancing, poetry, and yoga, and yooooo it was so much fun! I can’t dance, draw, do yoga, and I don’t consider myself to be a poet, but doing those activities with a new group, and with people trying new activities was, in my opinion, quintessential tSB. If I wasn’t hooked then, I was definitely hooked after the first retreat, and snowboarding for the first time with the group only cemented that. I’m so appreciative to have just jumped into this community, and to be so warmly accepted!
Speaking of new hires, a huge shout out to our newest members of the Program Team, Roedah Mansour and Eugene Oh! Roedah joined the team in September, and is our new Program Coordinator. Roedah has seamlessly jumped in, focusing her attention on working with the Peer Leaders and incoming mentors. A dynamic youth advocate, Roedah brings her creativity as a filmmaker, and her jovial and warm personality to the squad! We’re so stoked to have another powerful, woman of color on our team! Eugene stepped on as our Program Intern in October to complete his Social Work practicum. Eugene is completing his undergraduate coursework in both, Social Work and Computer Science, at the University of Washington. Since he’s stepped on, Eugene has been a welcomed addition to the team, bringing his positive energy, connecting with the Peer Leaders, and focusing on prophet and mentor recruitment.
As we get ready for next year’s Core Program, we can’t help but feel confident and excited! Look out for this new group of Peer Leaders and the new Program Team to continue building on tSB’s momentum!
–Cole Story, Program Manager
This summer, tSB partnered with Puget Sound Clean Air Agency (PSCAA) to educate and empower tSB youth to take community action regarding air quality and environmental justice. During the workshop, youth learned about common causes of air pollution, the regions and demographics that are most affected by poor air quality, as well as environmentally-conscious options to diminish emissions.
The youth were surprised to learn that “our air quality isn’t as good as we think it is, even though we live in the Pacific Northwest.” At the end of the workshop, we assembled clean air filter fans to install in the youth’s homes, which proved to be incredibly useful because just 2 weeks later, Seattle was covered in forest fire smoke. Look out for that PM2.5.
Check out the blog on PSCAA website!
Happy Holidays tSB Community!
On October 26th, members of our community, the tSBoard of Directors and tSB staff gathered at the 2100 building to have a conversation about the recent transitions at tSB and the future of our organization. We appreciate those of you that attended and all the invaluable feedback we received. We truly believe that any steps that we take toward strengthening and maintaining tSB must reflect the voices and opinions of the community that we serve.
We understand that there were many who were unable to attend. We still want to ensure that all of our members are informed of our work and have the opportunity voice their feedback as we move forward to continue our great work at tSB.
What happened over the past year:
– Leadership transitions over the last several years have been challenging
– Previous operational expenses and staff demands exceed current capacity
– Less aggressive fundraising
– Needed to cut expenses, which led to tough decisions – we had to lay of a staff member and reduce other staff hours
– The Board led an emergency fundraising campaign over the summer which raised $82,000 between July-September
– Interim ED, Chiloe Barrera-Cloyd left in August to go back to school. You can read more from Chiloe here.
– Lacie West started at the end of September as Interim ED to plan Soiree and manage current staff. You can read more about Lacie here.
– Sara Bloom departed tSB at end of September. You can read more from Sara here.
What are we doing now:
– Reducing expenses, conserving resources and securing budget relieving items
– Applying for more grants through utilizing an experienced grant writer
– Focusing on sustainability and fundraising and re-engaging with donors who have become disconnected from tSB
– Hired part-time development assistant and program assistant
– Greater utilization of volunteers
– Reduced program, which includes shorter timeline and smaller group of prophets, mentors, and snowboard instructors
– Asking for help from the community
What the next few months and beyond look like:
– Soiree was critical! Our goal was to raise $75,000 (we exceeded our goal!)
– Creative funding strategies: Creating formal, long-lasting partnerships and sponsorships to cut costs, prioritize funding research, solicitation and professional -grant writing, greater stewardship and diversity of funding sources
– Utilize volunteer base: Develop long-term volunteer/intern roles to be filled regularly
– Ensure that current staff members receive adequate support (includes professional development)
– Recruit board members that reflect the communities we serve : Actively utilize alumni and community networks, have a clear ideal profile to identify potential nominees, use our local networks (corporate and community), increase board visibility and transparency
– Keeping the community informed: email lists, alumni databases, reports/updates, media page on website
– Increase visibility: frequent website updates, updated collateral materials and more presence within community events/activities
Thank you for the incredible support you’ve given to tSB in many ways. During this year of transition, we’ve asked a lot of the community and haven’t always communicated with you as openly or as quickly as we should have. We’re committed to improving our lines of communication and are looking forward to this next chapter of tSB!
tSBoard of Directors
August 23, 2017
Dear friends, family and community members,
One thing I have learned from my tenure with the Service Board is how relationships flex and change as people grow and take on new challenges. I write this letter as I end my interim role as tSB’s Executive Director and move onto my next big challenge!
I hope this letter may serve as an expression of gratitude, an affirmation of my commitment and lasting support, as well as naming opportunities for tSB to continue to grow.
I wish to express my resounding appreciation to the tSB staff members I have been able to work with. Their dedication to radical honesty, self reflection and commitment to excellence drives the integrity and authentic community building that makes our program unique. tSB staff have inspired, mentored, and uplifted me. They remain the primary reason why I know tSB will continue to fulfill its mission with grit and everlasting swagger.
As a staff member, I have taken immense pleasure in contributing to an environment that celebrates youth agency and creates tight, long lasting bonds between people. Communities like ours are best practiced as a verb and cannot be upheld without shared accountability. Here is my pledge for the future to perpetuate our mission and support our collectivity:
- I will continue relationships with the youth, peers and mentors I have connected with. I will show up and I will listen.
- I will shepherd in new leadership at the Service Board in ways that are appropriate and helpful.
- I will always be a resource for institutional knowledge and critical feedback.
- I will yield to the next generation of tSB leaders and will suspend judgement as tSB innovates in unexpected ways in the future.
- I will hold the organization accountable to the highest standard as demanded and outlined by the youth of Seattle. I will never put my voice above that of the youth we serve.
In return, I expect this organization to continue to grow and surprise me. Here are some areas where I think this can happen:
- I look forward to watching the Service Board continue to hire and support radical, emerging leaders (folks new to the non-profit world, brown folks, folks without degrees, folks with degrees in completely unrelated fields, young people, old people, trans folks and gender non-conforming folks, queer people and especially program alumni). I hope one day to say, “oh yeah, tSB’s amazing new ED was in the program when I worked there.”
- After 21 years, the Service Board is in a unique place to take a look at how we interact with social justice issues. Is it enough to do workshops and service learning? Perhaps the needs of marginalized youth in Seattle extend past talking about why their communities are underserved. What would it look like for social justice to be integrated into our mission? Let’s be clear about who we serve and why! How would this affect our relationships with our donors and how we can work on strengthening our donor relationships so they feel informed, are deeply connected to our youth, and feel accountable to our mission.
I look forward to supporting our youth leaders and community as we continue to wrestle with these important questions.
The Service Board has been my refuge for over 10 years. It is the place where I am told that my potential is boundless, that I am inherently intelligent, that I am worth challenging and that my voice always matters. The Service Board has been a community that has healed my wounds and even replaced them with beautiful affirmations. It has been my honor to serve this community and I cannot wait to witness the future of our organization!
WHEN I SAY T-S, YOU SAY B! TS…
With boundless warmth and affection,
PS. Want to know what’s next for me? I do too! I have plans to return to school and become a midwife, but as I leave the Service Board I am soundly embracing the unknown. Also, I’m getting married to my partner who I met in tSB (yay!). I look forward to sharing all my new adventures with my tSB family as I have for the past 10 years and plan to for the rest of my life!
We are super excited to be hosting an intern on behalf of the city of Seattle’s Seattle Youth Employment Program. We’ve asked her to share a little about herself below. She’ll be working on learning how to write grants, manage our gear inventory, and whipping our office into a more organized state. Please join us in welcoming her to the tSB summer team. Here’s a little information about the newest member of the tSB family:
Sarah Keller is a Seattleite who spent three years working in the Buddy Program, mentoring children with disabilities. In 2014, she received a peace award from advocating for Mental Health Awareness and the Stop Bullying Project. Sarah is a student at SouthWest Cultural Arts Center, graduating early with a 3.0, and plans to go to college to major in Sociology.
Sarah likes to spend her free time writing poetry, drawing, hiking, and loving her five quirky cats. Her ideal vacation would definitely be hiking down Shi Shi Beach in the Olympic National Park, and setting up camp on the sand. Although Sarah has many passions, she wants to take action towards the growth of a more accepting society when it comes to race, gender, and sexuality.
Sarah has many goals for her future, such as working in Child Development, advocating for Mental Health Awareness, becoming skilled in a variety of different Arts, and owning at least three big dogs.
During August, your gift will have twice the impact on Seattle youth who need safe space where their voices are heard.
Our community supporters Fishermen’s Finest, evo and the tSB Board have stepped up to provide a fundraising challenge that will match your donations dollar for dollar for up to $50,000 in the month of August. Please make a donation today and help us raise $100,000 during a critical transition period for tSB. Money raised will help ensure that we have the resources to hire our next great leader, lay a more sustainable path forward and continue serving a critical need for youth.
You can also send donations to our office at:
the Service Board
4408 Delridge Way SW, Ste 100
Seattle, WA 98106
“One of the greatest things I got from tSB is to ‘push your growing edges.’ You had to step out of your own bubble, you need to try new things, and it was okay through the process to fail and fall because that’s how you learn to grow and better yourself.”
– Maryyah T., tSB alumna
Thank you to our incredible Community Supporters!