THE ORCHID FOUNDATION
MAKING FUTURES BLOSSOM
The Orchid Foundation is a mentorship and scholarship program for underserved girls. We choose girls who are excelling in their academic and extracurricular pursuits to help fill the resource gap presented by their socioeconomic backgrounds. Our mission is to mentor these girls to and through college. We are small by design, going deep rather than broad. We touch the lives of our “Orchids” with personal care, educational support and a broad-minded view of the world with designs to foster leaders for tomorrow. These “Orchids” are 14-22 year old powerhouses who deserve the opportunities and success they are working so hard to attain.
The Orchid Foundation Programs
Over the past years, we have held mock college interviews, SAT prep, taken our Orchids on guided art tours and gone on career day field trips; all while building our stock portfolios. This and more is only possible because of the generous 100% tax deductible donations we receive.
We are learning code language and technology through interactive lessons with our partners at Codecademy. We sound fancy right?! Python, Swift, HTML, CSS yep our brilliant Orchids with the help of our Orchid Angels at Codecademy speak that language tooooo. Next we take over the world.
The college application process can be brutal and scary. No fear, The Orchid Foundation is here! We help each of our Orchids individually with everything from college selection to application completion. But wait there’s more… our super donors turn their offices into college admissions headquarters. Each Orchid arrives dressed in her interview bests and leaves with thorough notes on her college essay, but not before being interviewed by alum from Duke, U Penn, Harvard and more. Our super donor Coller Capital hosted our inaugural College Bootcamp. If you are jealous and want to join in on the fun send your girls an email at firstname.lastname@example.org
A great philosopher once said, “Tis better to have a $10 purse with $1000 in it than a $1000 purse with $10 in it.” Oh wait, our founder, Nichole Galicia, said that. Our Orchids spend senior year becoming financially literate, buying and selling stocks, investing in Roth IRA’s and saving for our blindingly bright futures. Can you say “compound interest”?
GLASS CEILING BREAKERS
Every teenager at some point will be asked, “What do you want to be when you grow up?" To help our Orchids make the most informed decision we hold career day field trips several times a year. Professionals host us in their work environments where we get an up close account of the ins and outs of a variety of careers, have the opportunity to ask questions and learn at the feet of experts. Email us at email@example.com if you'd like to volunteer for career day.
We have a love fest going on at The Orchid Foundation. We are overflowing with support and goodwill, so every year we plan to pay it forward by supporting teens less fortunate than ourselves. This year The Orchid Foundation is raising money for homeless kids at Covenant House and a family in the Ukraine. We set up a crowdfunding page, solicited our community for help, put on bake sales and did some old fashioned begging of parents, friends and really anyone in arms length all for a good cause. Check out our twitter and instagram pages @theorchidfdn and/or subscribe to our newsletter for more information.
We offer tutoring year round in every subject. We also host SAT and ACT bootcamp the summer of sophomore and junior years where we identify weak points to strengthen and take practice tests. Oh so many practice tests. But wait there’s more...the Orchids then take two to three real SATs. Scores, tutor, scores, tutor. The early bird gets...everything!
CLASSICALLY TRAINED ORCHIDS
The arts and The Orchid Foundation are like almond butter and Honeycrisp apples #PerfectTogether. So, every year we find fun ways to incorporate the classics into our educational repertoire. Whether resident art historian Kent Alessandro is putting us through our Renaissance, Baroque and Pop art paces or Emmy winner Chris Silber creates a film school just for us, or Grammy Award winner Printz Board is creating the soundtrack to our lives, or we study art history with Heart of the Art NYC founder Emily Sachar, our Orchids are getting their well-rounded on. Check out our fancy on twitter and instagram: @theorchidfdn
We curate once in a lifetime experiences for our Orchids. Whether Academy Award nominee, writer/director of Yellowstone Taylor Sheridan invites us to his ranch courtesy of Paramount or fashion designer to the stars Carmen Marc Valvo is donating gowns for prom or the time we rang the closing bell at Nasdaq, or posed for celebrity photographer Udo Spreitzenbarth & America’s Next Top Model’s lead stylist Ty-Ron Mayes during a self esteem boosting photoshoot... after we study our bums off, we are up to fancy things at The Orchid Foundation! We have a team of Orchid Angels that support and guide us. Blessings on blessings on blessings on blessings.
Orchid Coumba read an article that stated the average millionaire has seven streams of income. We have boss lady dreams at The Orchid Foundation so Seven Streams is where we nurture our entrepreneurial spirit. Everything from Youtube empires to real estate ventures, in Seven Streams we put on our secure the bag hats, brainstorm ideas and make them happen. Support us as we seek our own seven streams of income. We are currently seeking a real estate mentor. Holler at your Orchids!
Sometimes yucky stuff happens. At The Orchid Foundation we don't cry it out, we fight it out. OK sometimes we cry too, but then we hit the gym for some fat busting, soul lifting physical therapy. Our super donor Michael Olajide Jr, creator of Aerospace donates boxing lessons and Uriah Hurst keeps us motivated and feeling like "demigoddesses" through his unique circuit training routines. In addition to moving our bodies, nutritionist Dr. Susan Vanucci is teaching us how to make healthy food choices with personalized wellness counseling. Our Orchids are learning to become lean mean fancy lady like brilliant fighting machines.
We are hands on with our Orchids, curating group events that build sisterhood amongst the girls, as well as one on one activities that cater to each girl’s individual needs. The focus is on building self esteem, character and the can do spirit needed to be successful in today’s world. Sisterhood is the heartbeat of what we do.
We are actively looking for a seat at the table, your table to be exact. Organizations like Epoch Investment Partners, VINTUS, Givsly, RevCascade, Center for Policing Equity and Eleven+ offer Orchids #paid internships. Jelly? Let us sit with you. We seek to expand our partnership with as many companies as will have us. How else are we going to pay for college while we soak up all your knowledge? Drop us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org We promise to fit you with an Orchid that aligns with your needs. Looking for a self-starting perfectionist with a great work ethic who will take constructive criticism while multitasking and is a people person? Duh that's Orchid Markayla, hire us.
MENTORS 'R US
I'm sure there is some fancy statistic about the value of having a mentor. I don't need to google it because I already know that Kent changed my life. Every Orchid has a mentor that she has met at one of our many career days. We are better because of those relationships. I encourage our girls to find her own Kent, because I'm not sharing mine. Thank you Emily and Kathleen and Zoe and Lauren and James and Anthony and Savoy and Amyn and Ty-Ron and Josh. Watch how we change the world and give you your much deserved credit.
THE PINK PARTY
We are all about girl power at The Orchid Foundation. Before we go all Wonder Woman 1984 on you, we need a safe space to have discussions on what it means to be a woman in today's world. What happens at The Pink Party, stays at the Pink Party. Designed and co-created by Orchid Alison and our Intern Mal. You must be an 02 or above to attend. Sorry Buds.
EACH ONE TEACH ONE
What happens in The Orchid Foundation stays in The Orchid Foundation. Especially when it comes to knowledge. Our 01s hold zoom-inars (yeah I just coined a new phrase) to teach all the good good they have learned to the 02s. The attorneys at Lowenstein Sandler taught us how to write cover letters and resumes, Orchid Coumba taught the 02s. Orchid Alison learned Word, Powerpoint and Excel during a summer internship and taught the 02s. Orchid Markayla's zoom-inar is all about the college application process from FAFSA to transferring. Soon the 02's will be teaching the 03's. We have each other's back, front and both sides. Go Orchids!
We have partnered with Shaw Academy and LingoZing to give the Orchids access to countless courses in a multitude of topics from photography, music, excel, French and so much more. What I'm trying to say is ne me détestez pas parce que je parle trois langues et je suis raffiné.
The Kent Alessandro Art Achievement
The Kent Alessandro Art Achievement is an award that recognizes Orchids, Oaks, Buddies and Buds who have demonstrated exceptional knowledge and appreciation of art. Our goal is to support and encourage the next generation of art enthusiasts.
The scholarship is open to anyone who completes the following:
-11 hours with an Art Historian
-11 museum/gallery visits or art tours
-11 hours of art documentaries (Art of the Steal, Simon Schama’s: Power of Art Series, TBD)
-Interview with the Selection Committee
The winner of the Kent Alessandro Art Achievement will receive $3000.
MEET OUR ORCHIDS
is our first Orchid to graduate from college. (Insert tears and cheers here!) Alison graduated from the College Of the Holy Cross in Wooster, Massachusetts with honors, an incredible network of lifetime mentors she built at The Orchid Foundation and a healthy stock portfolio that she, like all the Orchids, has been discussing, researching and later funding since high school. Through the generosity of many donors at The Orchid Foundation, especially Mr. Gustav Christensen, our Blossom Alison graduated debt free and is currently conquering the world in Boston in her first grown lady role with tech giant Oracle. Hear the silent, but loud purrrrrrr.
After 8 years as an Orchid, Coumba graduated Emory’s Goizueta Business School with a Bachelor's in Business Administration. During her reign at college she was President of Emory’s Black Pre-Law Society, Sophomore Representative and Director of Fundraising for the Student Educational Experience Development, as well as Scholarship and Fundraising Committee Chair of Paving Our Futures. Ensuring Coumba could keep her focus on her studies super donors Alexander Paiusco, Emily Bergl and our Artists for The Orchid Foundation rallied around our her to provide her with a $Free.99 (insert tears) education. Orchid Angel Emily Bergl went the extra mile and not only provided Coumba with a scholarship but has been her mentor and friend for 7 years and counting. What's an Orchid to do when she graduates debt free, with vex money (that's a roth IRA and stocks) and has an incredible network of mentors? Go be great. We will keep you posted on Coumba's greatness.
is our Broadway Baby, a junior at City College of New York. Markayla loves musical theater, her favorites being Hairspray and Hamilton. She taught us all a lesson in bravery as she took a few gap years before and durning her tenure at SUNY Albany to fight stage 4B Hodgkins Lymphoma. Markayla got up swinging and got right back to her hobbies: politics, beauty and fashion, civil rights and all things Korean. She's interned at Central Policing Equity and Coller Capital, her knowledge of literature, black history and classical music is impressive. Some of her extracurricular activities include Model UN, Feminism Club and the University of Michigan Summer Program. 2017 National Honors Society inductee. Markayla is our unsung genius, but don't worry we are learning how to sing.
is our Go-getter. Currently a junior at Notre Dame, don't let those cute dimples fool you Alexa is a beast when it comes to work and play. Salutatorian of her senior class, she was a constant fixture on the high honor roll because the honor roll is for babies. Captain of the varsity volleyball, varsity basketball, AAU team (Force), does community service raising money for Covenant House, Student Senate Treasurer, graduated from the Bud Program, soon to be tri-lingual, interested in international business & is obsessed with sneakers, dogs and France. You will soon be obsessed with Alexa too.
is our mini Olivier Rousteing. He's a junior in high school and has aspirations of being the next big fashion designer. When he's not studying or modeling, you can find him making his own clothes and jewelry. He plans to continue in the fashion field and we are so excited to see where his journey leads him.
is our resident polymath. He's a junior in high school with eggs in multiple baskets. He loves art, creating watercolor works and is a part of a group that visits galleries across the city. Lonnie is a math enthusiast, has been in his school's chorus for 8 years and counting and has too many interests to decide on his future just yet, but we already know it will be bright!
Our graduates are attending York College, NYU, Hampshire and George Washington to name a few. Gone, but never forgotten. Our incredible girl gang is going to change the world someday soon.
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Nichole Galicia is an actress (Mayor of Kingstown, Django Unchained) and model who wrote an art book titled Equipo Cronica: the Nichole Kent Collection. She was formerly on the junior committee of the New York Center for Children where she helped raise donations towards the fight against child abuse. In her spare time Nichole is an avid Formula One fan.
Oftentimes opportunity doesn't leave a neighborhood. Thank you to our magnificent board for being our neighbors!
THANK YOU TO OUR ORCHID CHAMPIONS:
our life changing donors
ED & BETSY ZIMMERMAN
THANK YOU TO OUR SCHOLARSHIP GRANTORS:
THE HELEN & JOSEPH ALESSANDRO SCHOLARSHIP
THE ARTISTS FOR THE ORCHIDS SCHOLARSHIP
THE GLORIA ZIMMERMAN SCHOLARSHIP
THE HEART OF THE ART NYC SCHOLARSHIP
THE GUSTAV CHRISTENSEN SCHOLARSHIP
THE CHRIS PINE SCHOLARSHIP
THE THOMAS HOUSEAGO SCHOLARSHIP
THE EPOCH INVESTMENT PARTNERS SCHOLARSHIP
THANK YOU TO OUR ORCHID HEROES:
our super donors
JAMES E. MANLEY
BRIAN & TERRI LEARST
ERIN MCKENNA'S BAKERY
ROSEMARIE DI LORENZO
EPOCH INVESTMENT PARTNERS
PAUL & MARY ELLEN DENOON
JOHN POWERS MIDDLETON
IROQUOIS AVENUE FOUNDATION
THE PETER MORTON FOUNDATION
EMMANUEL BAPTIST CHURCH
THANK YOU TO OUR ORCHID SUPPORTERS:
our super in-kind donors