Last season, Pathfinders hosted an evening of tempting tangos, sizzling salsas, and jiving jitterbugs for its inaugural Dancing with the Naples Stars event. Chaired by Judy Tedder and Sarann Kraushaar, the competition attracted hundreds of guests to cheer on Naples Stars – key government, community, and business leaders – who were paired with professional dancers.
It was more than a prize driving the dancers to compete though, their goal was to change the path for some of Immokalee’s most at-risk children. They were rallied to support the event by members of Pathfinders, an auxiliary support group with a goal of raising awareness and much needed tuition assistance for Pathways Early Education Center of Immokalee.
Proceeds from Dancing with the Naples Stars and Pathfinders’ future events will give Immokalee’s future leaders access to high-quality, early learning programs. Multiple studies have shown that when students are engaged in early education programs, they are more prepared to enter kindergarten with stronger language, math, and cognitive abilities. By giving every child access to nurturing and stimulating environments, Pathways is helping Immokalee’s future leaders adapt for a lifetime of learning.
Thousands of children have passed through Pathways’ doors to achieve success in school and careers, breaking the cycle of poverty that impacts over half of the families in Immokalee. However, the waiting list for a child to enter the school can be a year or longer.
More than 500 children are currently waiting to gain access to the language-rich environment, where they learn to work cooperatively with a diverse peer group.
Learn more at www.PathwaysEarlyEducation.org.